BELFAST — Dec. 1 is World AIDS Day. A candlelight vigil will take place from 4:30 to 5 p.m. in Post Office Square to honor all who live with the challenge of HIV/AIDS, and to remember loved ones who have died of this disease.

World AIDS Day started in 1988 as the first International Day for world health. “COVID-19 has demonstrated that no one is safe until everyone is safe,” Meredith Bruskin of Swanville said in a press release. “The perseverance and resilience of those who fought to bring the world’s attention to the pandemic of HIV is a powerful example to us today. Leaving people behind is not an option, if we are to succeed.

“Putting people at the center and grounding our response in human rights, gender rights and racial justice are key to ending the colliding pandemics of HIV and COVID-19. Accordingly, in 2022 the international theme is ‘Putting Ourselves to the Test: Achieving Equity to End HIV.'”

This annual vigil is sponsored by Camp Chrysalis, a camp in Midcoast Maine that Bruskin co-founded for children and their families who are affected by HIV/AIDS in their hearts and/or bodies. All are welcome to the vigil. “Bring candles and your kind hearts,” Bruskin said.

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