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CANFAR marks World AIDS Day with Canada's Largest Red Ribbon

-- AIDS Research Foundation Announces Keshia Chanté as Youth Ambassador --

December 1, 2010 (TORONTO) - Every 12 seconds, someone in the world is infected with HIV. Today, the need to find a cure for AIDS through research is critical as young adults account for a growing percentage of new HIV cases.

This World AIDS Day, the Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research (CANFAR) is pleased to announce a new partnership with Juno award-winning recording artist Keshia Chanté as its national Youth Ambassador. Today at Toronto's Yonge-Dundas Square, Chanté will rally together with CANFAR volunteers and MuchMusic VJ Sarah Taylor to mark World AIDS Day by creating Canada's largest red ribbon.

"At CANFAR, we believe this generation of young adults has the power to lower the incidence of HIV infection in Canada. Having an ambassador like Keshia, who connects with Canada's youth, is critical," said Christopher Bunting, president, CANFAR. "Keshia is a talented artist, a great role model and extremely passionate about the AIDS cause. We are thrilled to have her as a partner."

Twenty-five per cent of all new HIV diagnoses in Canada are young adults (aged 15-24), and more than half of all Canadian grade nine students wrongly believe there is already a cure or vaccine. In addition, a quarter of sexually active young adults admit that their last sexual encounter was unprotected. The lack of awareness surrounding HIV/AIDS among this audience is approaching an all-time high, not unlike in the 1980's when very little was known about the disease.

"The status of HIV/AIDS among young adults in this country is shocking," said CANFAR Youth Ambassador Keshia Chanté. "I'm humbled by the opportunity to join CANFAR in the fight to end AIDS through research and help spread awareness and prevention messages to Canada's youth."

CANFAR urges Canadians to show their support by wearing a red ribbon and joining the fight to end AIDS. CANFAR will distribute over 100,000 red ribbons across the country on World AIDS Day. Canadians can show their support for AIDS research by getting their virtual red ribbon at www.endaids.ca.

-End-

ABOUT CANFAR

The Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research is Canada's only independent charitable foundation dedicated to eliminating HIV/AIDS through research. By funding promising Canadian HIV/AIDS research and spreading awareness through education campaigns, CANFAR is working to end AIDS globally. Since 1987, CANFAR has awarded $17 million to HIV/AIDS research projects. Visit CANFAR.com or endAIDS.ca for more information.

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Valerie Mendonca

vmendonca@webershandwick.com

416-500-2953

Holly Bacchus

hbacchus@canfar.com

647-284-6372


Reproduced with permission - "Foundation for AIDS Research (CANFAR)"

Foundation for AIDS Research (CANFAR)
www.canfar.com


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