World AIDS Day in the Big Bend

Stanley Khan was 16 years old when doctors told him he was HIV positive.

Kahn says he contracted the disease through a blood transfusion when he was an infant, born nine weeks prematurely. Now at age 23, Kahn is sharing his story and isn't letting the deadly virus control his life.

Stanley says, "I made a promise to myself to keep going on, go to college and excel, get a full-time job. Keeping the promise and keeping a positive attitude has helped me along these years."

Kahn is hoping World AIDS Day will be the catalyst to help other folks learn about the disease, and in Gadsden County, commissioners sponsoring a health fair with valuable information about HIV and AIDS.

Vivian Howard, World AIDS Coordinator in Gadsden County, says, "It's very important for people to know their health and their status. We're having a lot of fun here, that you know your status and you know the status of your partner."

It’s a message that was also heard on the campus of Florida A&M in Tallahassee. AIDS organizers are hoping the information will empower folks to take the test that could save their lives.

Several agencies in the Big Bend are providing free confidential testing, including the Health Department, Big Bend Cares and SHISHA.