WHAT: Hundreds of community members are expected to attend the 23rd annual Tree of Life Tree Lighting Ceremony hosted by Mama’s Kitchen and sponsored by AIDS Healthcare Foundation. Attendees will enjoy holiday tunes from the San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus and complimentary refreshments will be provided by Kona Coffee. More than 200 people are expected to attend.
The theme of World AIDS Day 2014 is “Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS-free Generation,” which is supported by the United Nations. World AIDS Day reminds people that HIV has not gone away, and that there are many things still to be done.
WHERE: Village Hillcrest Retail Center, 3995 Fifth Avenue, San Diego
WHEN: Monday, Dec. 1, 2014, 6:00 p.m. Best time to cover is from 6-7 p.m.
COST: The event is free and open to the public.
WHY: The event is San Diego County’s premiere event to commemorate World AIDS Day and honors those affected by AIDS and recognizes ongoing leadership efforts made to end the worldwide epidemic. It is also a fundraiser for Mama’s Kitchen, San Diego’s only county-wide meal delivery service for hundreds of men, women and children affected by AIDS or cancer.
VISUALS & INTERVIEWS:
- 6 p.m. to 6:15 p.m.: Community members purchasing and hanging ornaments, viewing AIDS Quilt panels, distribution of AIDS ribbons and candles.
- 6:15 p.m.: Program begins.
- Trees decorated with ornaments that honor those who have been affected by AIDS. Ornament sales benefit Mama’s Kitchen. Trees are on display throughout the month of December.
- Hundreds of candles lit throughout the event to remember those who have lost their lives to AIDS.
- Attendees bringing non-perishable food donations for the Mama’s Pantry program.
- Holiday tunes provided by members of the Gay Men’s Chorus of San Diego.
- AIDS quilts will be displayed at the event.
- AIDS Healthcare Foundation will be sponsoring a Red Ribbon Wall where people can hang red AIDS ribbons and take pictures.
- Alberto Cortés, executive director, Mama’s Kitchen – he is fluent in both English and Spanish.
- Patrick Loose, chief of the HIV, STD and Hepatitis Branch of Public Health Services, County of San Diego.
- Radio personality Delana Bennett is the event emcee.
THE FOLLOWING ELECTED OFFICIALS AND DIGNITARIES HAVE BEEN SCHEDULED TO ATTEND AND PARTICIPATE:
- San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer
- San Diego County Supervisor Ron Roberts
- San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis
- San Diego Council President Todd R. Gloria
- Patrick Loose, Chief of the HIV, STD and Hepatitis Branch of Public Health Services, County of San Diego
- Rev. Dan Koeshall
- Diana Schmid, AIDS Healthcare Foundation
For more information about Tree of Life or to participate in holiday giving opportunities, please call (619) 233-6262 or visit www.mamaskitchen.org.