The Red Pump Project® announced the launch of its ninth annual Rock the Red Pump® (#RocktheRedPump) campaign to commemorate National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NWGHAAD) that is observed annually on March 10. This year’s campaign theme is Know. Act. Rock; #RocktheRedPump was and continues to be a call-to-action for women and girls to know the facts about HIV, take the appropriate steps (act), and own the decisions that they make regarding their bodies and health (rock).
The premise of the 2017 campaign is simple; from now until March 10, Red Pump is asking its networks to stand fiercely in the face of stigma, judgement, and shame and counter those forces with facts, support and sisterhood. Participants can mobilize by doing one or more of the following:
- Wear red shoes (pumps, sneakers, or flats) on March 10 and upload photos to social media using the hashtag #RocktheRedPump
- Bloggers are encouraged to register their website for this year’s #RocktheRedPump Campaign on rocktheredpump.org
- Faith based organizations and houses of worship can participate in Red Pump Sunday on March 12
- Post educational statistics to their networks about HIV
- Share the official campaign button on Instagram, Facebook and/or Twitter and include the hashtag #RocktheRedPump
In 2009, Red Pump co-founders Karyn Lee and Luvvie Ajayi came together to devise a creative way to engage bloggers in recognition of NWGHAAD. They asked their fellow bloggers to “Rock the Red Pump” out of a desire to jumpstart important conversations on the issue of HIV and how the disease impacts women and girls—from there The Red Pump Project as a national, federally recognized nonprofit was born.
What began as a simple idea nine years ago, has grown into a full-fledged campaign that consistently attracts national attention, unites women of all backgrounds and ignites much-needed conversations about HIV. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are approximately 1.2 million people living with HIV in the U.S. and almost 280,000 are women, which makes the #RocktheRedPump campaign even more important and necessary.
“Over the last decade, a lot of progress has been made when you look at the decreasing rates of HIV among women,” says Lee. “However, we know that our job is not yet done, and each of us has a role to play when it comes to educating ourselves and the women in our lives about ways to prevent HIV as well as strategies to live a healthier life after diagnosis. This is how we begin to eradicate the stigma of this disease.”
Red Pump will also coordinate four events March 10 through March 18 to commemorate NWGHAAD in the following cities: Atlanta, Chicago, Fayetteville, and Washington, D.C. To register for #RocktheRedPump or to learn more about the upcoming events, visit RedPump.org. For media inquiries and interview requests with the founders and executive team, contact Jameka S. Whitten at [email protected].