Written by Iman Ahmad, GAAP service learning placement student
World AIDS Day 2017 was held on November 27th , 2017 by GAAP in collaboration with Planned Parenthood Toronto and New College. This LGBTQ+ and sex-positive event brought together university students from WGS160 Introduction to Women and Gender Studies class and community youth for discussion on issues related to HIV/AIDS and youth sexual health in an inclusive, interactive and innovative manner.
The event began with dinner (delicious falafel wraps!) and an informal networking session, where attendees were able to browse through sexual health and HIV/AIDS resource material provided by GAAP, Planned Parenthood Toronto and Sexual Education Centre (UofT). This was followed by interactive activity stations which included games such as bingo, button making, [sexy] cupcake decorating, digital storytelling and scrabble poetry. A special guest performance was given by SExT, a community-based youth theater group that presents sexual health education through drama, music and dance. This event concluded with the PEAK project’s interactive HIV and Anti-Stigma workshop which uses games and informal discussions to talk about sexual health, navigating boundaries, testing, prevention and stigma.
Overall, the night was a great success! Through various participatory and artistic methods, this event brought together youth to raise awareness and explore topics of sexual health, HIV prevention and AIDS awareness!