Happy vibes and more at the 2017 Ending HIV Big Gay Out
“It is heartening to see the community rally behind our efforts to end the transmission of HIV in New Zealand by 2025," says Jason Myers, Executive Director, NZAF
- 📅14 February, 2017
On the heels of launching Ending HIV – the new HIV prevention campaign from New Zealand AIDS Foundation (NZAF) – came the Ending HIV Big Gay Out 2017 to deliver everything it promised: A fabulous day with fun in the sun and more.
Drawing a crowd of 10,000, this year’s event featured Parson James as its mainstage headline act. Other local acts included Openside, Lavina Williams, Jimmy Moore & Cas.D, ANJI, Charlotte Yates, Buckwheat, Miss Ribena, Suzanne Paul, Aziz Sa’afin and Cindy of Samoa. The MCs ensured the crowd had plenty to think about and enjoy at New Zealand’s iconic harbourside event for and by the LGBTIQ community. People could choose from over 100 market stalls and the dance zone returned with more space, a larger bar, more platforms to dance and more performances. The legendary Urge Bear Garden was also back with a big bar and a shady chill-out zone.
Alongside the fun and entertainment, this was an opportunity to have a conversation about NZAF’s newly launched and well received campaign, Ending HIV, that aims to end new transmissions by 2025.
The event featured a giant eight-metre-tall inflatable condom, with volunteers distributing 15,000 free condom and lube packs. NZAF health services set up a free pop-up HIV rapid testing service that saw 220 individuals get tested on the day. An information stall provided information about the NZ PrEP Study that aims to make PrEP, the daily pill that prevents HIV, available to 150 high-risk gay and bi men.
“It is heartening to see the community rally behind our efforts to end the transmission of HIV in New Zealand by 2025. We’ve set ourselves an ambitious but achievable goal and it is only possible if all of us work together,” says Jason Myers, Executive Director, NZAF.