Aids Quilt Seeks to Wake up World

Kristen Griffith, Staff Writer

On Monday, April 29th the juniors and seniors gathered in the gymnasium for an assembly. But this specific assembly was much different then what any junior or senior has seen at North Point. This assembly was hosted by The Names Project and the goal was to inform everyone about something that is not commonly discussed, something that not everyone is fully aware of, and something that affects students more than they think, and that something is AIDS.  

 During the assembly there were three brave guest speakers that told their stories about living with HIV/AIDS, and how they got the disease. A man explained how he caught the dreadful disease from having sex in college. Next, a woman spoke on how she had the disease passed down from her mother. After the women told her story, there was another woman who read a poem titled “Wake Up World”. The point she was trying to get across was that people need to be aware of how this disease spreads. “I think that it was good for students to hear first hand what it is like living with AIDS. In my opinion, the assembly was informative and very moving,” said Aleaya Dixon (’13).

The Names Project came up with a way to represent people who died of AIDS, The AIDS Memorial Quilt. Within the quilt are panels using different objects that loved ones felt represented the life of the one that they lost. For example, one panel had pictures of a dog because the victim of AIDS was very close to him. Another was filled with the tiny shoes of children who died of AIDS. Dixon said, “You see the people represented though the eyes of their loved ones.” During the assembly, three members of the National Honors Society read letters about victims who died of AIDS. “I read a letter for a man named Steven Bailey that was written by his parents. The letter briefly talked about Steven’s experience with AIDS and explained what they put in his section of the quilt and why,” said Dixon.

There are over 46,000 panels that fill up a 1,293,300 square foot quilt. This quit has been around since 1987 and has made its way around the country. It was established in San Francisco and was later displayed on the National Mall in Washington DC.

 A portion of the larger quilt is now lying out in the gym for people to view. It will remain there for the entire week. While it is there, it will hopefully fulfill its goal by waking up the world and informing people on how to prevent them from getting this deathly disease called AIDS.