On October 21, 2002, Nelson Mandela stated, “The enormity of the threat posed by HIV/AIDS cannot be overstated. HIV/AIDS is a danger to all of our people – young and old, rich and poor, men and women, those in the cities and those in the countryside. HIV/AIDS is the greatest danger we have faced for many, many centuries. HIV/AIDS is worse than a war. It is like a world war. Millions of people are dying from it. As we speak now, there are thousands of people dying from it this moment. But this war can be won. This is one war where each and every one of us can make a difference. It is through the combined efforts of all of us that we stand the best chance of victory in this war against HIV/AIDS.”
On June 26th, San Diego Roller Derby is proud to announce that we are supporting Mama’s Kitchen, a local non-profit organization that delivers prepared food to men, women and children who are affected by AIDS or cancer. You can help us assist this amazing charity by bringing canned goods to benefit Mama’s Pantry, they will go to individuals and families in need. We will also be holding a 50/50 raffle where the money raised will be donated directly to Mama’s Kitchen.
Mama’s Kitchen is 20 years strong supporting those in need in San Diego County. Mama’s Kitchen delivers three nutritional meals a day, seven days a week at no charge to men, women and children living with AIDS or cancer. Additionally, Mama’s Kitchen provides pantry services (Mama’s Pantry) to people affected by AIDS. Through these services, they are able to provide food, compassion and hope to over 1,500 people annually living throughout San Diego County.
In 1990 volunteers from the AIDS Assistance Fund discovered that people with AIDS were dying from complications of malnutrition long before their immune systems were overcome by AIDS-related infections. Many were low-income and too ill, isolated or emotionally devastated to help themselves. Mama’s Kitchen was established as a San Diego nonprofit organization to offer nutritional support by way of a home meal delivery service.
HIV/AIDS seems to find a way to consume my thoughts. I have had people close to me pass away, I visited South Africa last summer, and I just returned from AIDS Lifecycle as a volunteer. I was 17 when I found out that my biological father was diagnosed with HIV, I did not know anything about it nor did I understand why there was no cure. He was fortunate enough to have access to proper medications and for the next 10 years, was a survivor. One of the things about HIV/AIDS, you can never know how your body will respond to any stress or illness and in January 2007, he passed.
Visiting South Africa was the most humbling experience I have ever faced. I was overwhelmed with every emotion: joy, pain, sorrow, love. It was a place where you are happy about one’s life and in tears from death within moments of one another. There was a young man, now age 9, by the name of Mlondololozi who was tested positive while I was sitting in his living room. He doesn’t know what that means, he doesn’t know that this disease will eventually overtake his life; he doesn’t know that he is a victim of this war with AIDS. There are many more stories like this one about my experiences in South Africa. But, this young man will be in my thoughts and prayers forever.
Just this past Saturday, I returned from AIDS Lifecycle (www.aidslifecycle.org) it is an event from San Francisco to Los Angeles, where 1,925 cyclist and 500 volunteers made the 545 mile trek for seven days. The cyclist and volunteers raised over 10 million dollars for HIV/AIDS research and funding for those affected with HIV/AIDS. Watching the “Positive Pedalers” as they rode strong each mile was breathtaking. Meeting new friends and creating new memories, priceless.
Let us all do what we can to support Mama’s Kitchen and their efforts to help those in need live a more comfortable life. Please visit their website www.mamaskitchen.org to find out other ways you can support this amazing organization. If each of our fans brought at least one of the following items to the Bandettes’ first game on June 26th we could together make a difference in the lives of people in our community afflicted with AIDS.
Here’s a list of items that are needed;
Box of cereal
Package of flour
Instant oatmeal packets
Box of dry milk
Boxes of pasta dinner
–Lady Diesel, #4 – San Diego Roller Derby