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  WINDY CITY TIMES

LGBTQ+ LatinX 'Day of the Dead' celebration to be presented by Chicago House
2019-09-28

This article shared 1467 times since Sat Sep 28, 2019
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CHICAGO, IL — Chicago House and Social Service Agency is pleased to announce "Fiesta! Day of the Dead," which will take place on October 31st, 2019, from 6 PM to 11 PM, at the National Museum of Mexican Art, located at 1852 W. 19th St. Chicago, IL 60608. Themed after 'Day of the Dead,' Fiesta is a celebration of the lives of those who have fallen due to HIV-related illnesses, as well as a tribute to their ongoing legacy. In Latin American culture, death marks a natural part of the life cycle. The holiday is not observed as a day of mourning, as it is believed that our fallen loved ones awake and celebrate with us.

"In 1985, Chicago House opened its doors to those dying of AIDS who had no family to turn towards and no place to die with dignity. As we approach 2020, our 35th season, we remember our fallen loved ones by continuing to serve populations most impacted by HIV/AIDS."

— Michael Herman, Chief Executive Officer at Chicago House

Partnering with the League of United Latin American Citizens, Comprension y Apoyo a Latinos en Oposicion al Retrovirus (CALOR), Latino Outreach and Understanding Division ( LOUD ), FLUX, Esperanza Health Centers, and Corazon Community Services, Chicago House will afford a completely cost-free event to attendees. The evening aims to lend a safe space to hold the memories of our fallen loved ones, while enjoying traditional Latin American food, beverages, and live music performances by local Latinx artists and a mariachi band.

The evening is set to be a positive experience that will provide the Latinx community with an opportunity to live, breathe, and have fun with friends & family, plus Chicago House will offer important resources to a group disproportionally affected by HIV. According to the Chicago Department of Public Health, in Chicago at the end of 2017, Hispanics represented 21% of all new HIV diagnoses, 18.4% of AIDS diagnoses, and 24.7% of late diagnoses.

Yet, districts like South Lawndale and the Lower West Side, as well as the surrounding suburbs, Cicero and Berwyn, encompass some of the Latinx communities hardest hit by HIV, however whom encounter noticeable gaps in HIV services, sexual health screening sites, PrEP providers, and infectious disease specialists. It is, therefore, vital that organizations that are truly mobile, resourceful, and committed to outreach, such as Chicago House, continue to invest in the communities that are most vulnerable to HIV.

About the agency: Chicago House and Social Service Agency has been on the forefront of reducing barriers for those affected by HIV/AIDS since the early years of the epidemic. Founded in 1985, Chicago House was the first HIV housing provider in the Midwest. We now serve more than 2,000 clients annually through expanded programming designed to holistically support individuals impacted by HIV/AIDS.

Chicago House affords integrated programs, including housing, employment services, medical linkage and retention services, sexual health screenings, trans-specific services, and supportive programming to those who are disenfranchised by HIV/AIDS, LGBTQ marginalization, poverty, homelessness, and/or gender nonconformity.

For more information about our services, making a donation, or volunteering, visit Chicago House online at www.chicagohouse.org ( site temporarily under construction ) and www.facebook.com/ChicagoHouse1985 .

—From a press release


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