The Red Ribbon Appeal is going virtual in 2020, providing people across NSW with innovative and exciting new ways to get involved with the iconic fundraising campaign. This year, participants can visit the Virtual Red Ribbon Wall and pin a virtual red ribbon, host a red-themed virtual fundraiser or set a virtual personal challenge in support of World AIDS Day.
Organised by ACON, NSW’s leading HIV health organisation, the Red Ribbon Appeal is an annual campaign in aid of efforts to eliminate HIV stigma, end HIV transmission and support people living with HIV.
It is held throughout November and culminates on Red Ribbon Week, which this year runs from 24 November to World AIDS Day on 1 December. All funds raised from the Red Ribbon Appeal goes towards community-led initiatives in HIV prevention, education, advocacy, care and support delivered by ACON.
In the wake of COVID-19 and ongoing restrictions on public gatherings and social events, ACON CEO Nicolas Parkhill said this year’s campaign will feature new virtual ways to enable safe participation. “Every year, thousands of people across NSW unite and come together to get behind the Red Ribbon Appeal,” he said.
“We are grateful for the ongoing support from our communities for this important campaign. But we know that 2020 has been a challenging time, so we’ve developed some exciting new virtual initiatives to make sure everyone can get involved with the Red Ribbon Appeal no matter where they are, in a COVID safe way,” said Mr Parkhill.
New in 2020 is the Red Ribbon Virtual Wall for World AIDS Day. The new online fundraising platform allows supporters to pin a virtual red ribbon and dedicate their donation with special message. You can dedicate your donation in remembrance, support or gratitude.
“The red ribbon is one of the most iconic health symbols in the world,” said Mr Parkhill. “It is universally acknowledged as the symbol for HIV/AIDS awareness, support, solidarity and remembrance. Having the red ribbon go virtual allows supporters to continue connecting with the campaign during these times and also help us extend the reach of the Red Ribbon message.”
This year, people are also being encouraged to organise virtual events for the appeal. ACON has produced a suite of digital resources to support virtual fundraisers such as free red-themed trivia quizzes, custom Red Ribbon virtual Zoom backgrounds and downloadable pre-recorded Red Ribbon video messages.
But you don’t need to be part of a group to get involved with the Red Ribbon Appeal. People can fundraise on their own by doing a virtual challenge such as setting a personal fitness goal. The online Red Ribbon Appeal platform allows people to connect their fundraising dashboard to fitness apps to help them track their progress.
“We are heartened to see how people come together each year for the Red Ribbon Appeal. But we know that getting together in 2020 is a challenge,” said Mr Parkhill. “These virtual initiatives will ensure we are still able to provide opportunities for people to show their support and be part of the Red Ribbon movement.”
This appeal is ACON’s most iconic and much-loved fundraising campaign and we’re grateful for the support and enthusiasm people bring to Red Ribbon each year. So join us this World AIDS Day and be part of the Red Ribbon Appeal,” said Mr Parkhill. “Every contribution will help efforts to end HIV stigma, prevent new transmissions and support people living with HIV.”
ACON’s Red Ribbon Appeal runs throughout November. Red Ribbon Week runs from 24 November – 1 December (World AIDS Day). For more information and to visit the Virtual Red Ribbon Wall: www.virtualredribbon.org.au
For more information about hosting a virtual event and other ways to get involved with the Red Ribbon Appeal, visit: www.redribbonappeal.org.au for details.
Image: Red Ribbon (supplied)