World AIDS Day Community Events

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An estimated 34 million people worldwide are living with HIV or AIDS.

That number includes close to 1,500 people in our viewing area.

Several local events are taking place this week to mark World Aids Day on Saturday.

Karl Warren says he's nearly died four different times with AIDS.

When we first introduced you to Karl in May, he was losing his ability to walk due to medicine he takes to keep alive.

"If you wake up in the morning and you wake up with a little bit of pain, you're still here, so you get another day to get through," said Warren. "That's about it. I stopped planning for the future a long time ago," he said.

"Want to make sure that our community partners, concerned citizens and other agencies are equally as concerned about the condition as the local health department," said Leroy Jackson, coordinator for the Leon County Health Department's HIV/AIDS program.

To that end, the Leon County Health Department and other local groups are commemorating World AIDS Day Saturday with events all week.

On Tuesday November 26, actress and HIV/AIDS activist Sheryl Lee Ralph will speak at FAMU's Grand Ballroom at 7:00 p.m.

The "Striking to Zero" panel discussion will take place at FAMU's Al Lawson Center in Room 450 on Wednesday November 27 at 6:00 p.m.

The World Aids Day Candlelight Vigil will be held at FAMU's Eternal Flame at 5:45 p.m. on Thursday.

Friday features a pre World Aids Day celebration at the Double Tree Hotel at 101 S. Adams in Tallahassee at 6 p.m.

And Saturday, the World Aids Day Luncheon will be at the Southside Arts Complex from 11:30 to 1;30.

Meanwhile, Leon County health department team members year round hand out tens of thousands of free condoms to prevent the spread of the virus.

"We go to where the people at, you can't serve folks from an ivory tower," said Jackson.

"This is not something to screw around with, the consequences are severe," said Warren.

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