\ GAMERA (Gay Asian Men Encouraging Respect and Awareness) is gearing up in Evanston. This new group will focus on Asian American and Pacific Islander males ages 18 and over who identify as gay, bi, transgender, or questioning.
The group will be a space to address queer AAPI issues such as dating, homophobia, race, and coming out in Asian culture. The group will also cover HIV prevention issues that are unique to this population. Asian Human Services (AHS) and Asian Health Coalition of Illinois (AHCI) are partners on the project, which is funded by the Illinois Department of Public Health.
David Amarathihada from Asian Human Services states, 'GAMERA may not get a lot of men at first because seeking support services like this is not as
culturally accepted in Asian culture.'
'The nature of GAMERA itself being specifically around HIV and coming out issues could be another barrier,' added Karl Kimpo from AHCI. 'Then again this kind of thing has never been done before. We're very excited about how it will all turn out.'
GAMERA will meet every 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month and will begin in May. For location and times, contact David Amarathithada at (773) 293-8460 or Karl Kimpo at (773) 878-0761.