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ACCESS Press Releases

ACCESS Press Releases

Friday, 13 November 2015 14:30

9th Annual World AIDS Day Benefit

For Immediate Release

What:  ARTS for LIFE, 9th Annual World AIDS Day Benefit
When: November 30, 2015@ 7:00pm
Where:  Benjack Studio Theatre @ TRDance Center, 325 Granby Street, downtown Norfolk
Cost:  $25 adults/ $15 students to benefit ACCESS AIDS CARE
Contact:  Ricardo Melendez at 757. 626.3262 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


December 1 marks the annual observance of World AIDS Day—a day of remembrance, a day to raise awareness, a day to sound the alarm about the continuing spread of this disease. Since 2007 leading arts organizations throughout Hampton Roads have joined forces to celebrate ARTS for LIFE, an evening of dance, theater and song to benefit local AIDS organizations.

Ricardo Melendez, founding director of Actor’s Workshop of Virginia, is the producer of ARTS for LIFE. “It is our responsibility as artists, as individuals, to lend our talents and support to benefit those organizations helping to ease the struggle caused by this worldwide epidemic,” he says. “I believe that charity begins at home. AIDS is affecting all sectors of our community, including our youth. So we have gathered local artists and offered our talents to benefit those locally affected.”        

From its inception, ARTS for Life has brought together internationally recognized local artists like Narissa Bond, Julie Clark, Mindy Brown and groups like Todd Rosenlieb Dance, the Hampton Roads Men’s Chorus, Virginia Ballet Theater, Virginia Stage Company, Actor’s Workshop of Virginia and The Governor’s School for the Arts, amongst others, in a benefit concert that raises awareness and grants support to ACCESS AIDS CARE.  Each year, Local visual artists and businesses donate their work and services for a silent auction and raffle.

The Benjack Studio Theatre at TRDance Center in downtown Norfolk will host the 9th Annual ARTS for LIFE on Monday, November 30. Save the date and share with us in this unique event celebrating life.

For more information, go to

Download PDF Press Release Here

Friday, 13 November 2015 14:19

National Transgender Awareness Week

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                  

Tel. 757.640.0929

Email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


LGBT Center of Hampton Roads Hosts Event for

National Transgender Awareness Week, Friday, November 20.

NORFOLK, Va. – November 11, 2015– In observance of National Transgender Awareness Week, November 14 to November 20, ACCESS AIDS Care and The LGBT Center of Hampton Roads, are joining a host of organizations from across the country for a week of education and community events including: Transgender Day of Action, Transgender Day of Remembrance and Transgender Day of Resilience.

According to, National Transgender Awareness Week “raises the visibility of transgender and gender non-conforming people, and addresses the issues these communities face.”  The week is a time for community allies and transgender people to raise awareness and take action on public issues. The week also promotes acceptance and equality for the transgender community. 

ACCESS AIDS Care and The LGBT Center of Hampton Roads will be hosting an event on Transgender Day of Remembrance, November 20. The event will honor those whose lives were lost in acts of anti-transgender violence, acknowledge the successes the transgender community has made this year, and discuss the services and advocacy needed to move transgender rights and equality forward in Hampton Roads. The event will be held at The LGBT Center at seven o’clock in the evening, it is open to all.

“Our Center believes that it is important to honor and recognize the individuals in our community that identify as Transgender,” said Mary Aab, Director of the LGBT Center,
“They are the often the less visible within the LGBT community and they frequently receive some of the harshest discrimination. We’re here to support them and walk with them on their journey. This week and our event are important because they open the door to the community, and allow us to show our support for everyone.”    

For more information visit:  Participate online using the hashtag #TDOR.   



ACCESS AIDS Care is an AIDS service organization that provides free and confidential HIV testing throughout the year.  For over 25 years, ACCESS AIDS Care has helped those affected by HIV/AIDS through supportive and educational services.   For more information, visit, or call us at 757.640.0929.

Download PDF Press Release Here

NORFOLK, Va. –July 15, 2015– The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has awarded ACCESS AIDS Care with $1.75 million to fund a new five-year collaborative targeted HIV testing program, aimed at Hampton Roads most vulnerable populations. 

ACCESS AIDS Care will use the new funding to deliver high-impact HIV prevention and testing to adult men and women who engage in injection or non-injection drug use.  This initiative will do so by providing testing to target areas around Hampton Roads and by ensuring individuals who are high risk or HIV-positive have access to prevention and support services.  The initiative will also provide condom distribution to HIV-positive, high risk and HIV-negative individuals.  Finally, the funding will assist the agency in integrating Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) testing into their current HIV testing program.  

This award is in part of a larger CDC initiative that granted a total of $216 million to 90 community-based organizations (CBOs) nationwide. Funding will help CBOs deliver effective HIV prevention strategies to those at greatest risk for HIV transmission.  CBOs have long been essential partners in CDC’s efforts to reduce new HIV infections and reduce HIV-related disparities. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced the award on July 1.

For more information visit:


ACCESS AIDS Care is an AIDS service organization that provides free and confidential HIV testing throughout the year.  For over 25 years, ACCESS AIDS Care has helped those affected by HIV/AIDS through supportive and educational services.   For more information, visit, or call us at 757.640.0929. 

Download PDF Press Release Here

NORFOLK, Va. –July 15, 2015– The LGBT Center of Hampton Roads (The Center), in part of ACCESS AIDS Care, announced the launch of My Family, a photo essay campaign.  

“Family” can mean different things to different people: birth families, partners, children, chosen families, etc. My Family aims to celebrate and showcase the diversity and strength among LGBT families throughout Hampton Roads.  

From July 15 to August 15, The Center will be encouraging families to visit their website and sign up.  The Virginia HIV/AIDS Resource and Consultation Center is working alongside The Center to recruit families for the campaign.   

Families that sign up are asked a few questions ranging from how they define family to who makes up their family.  Those that are selected will be professionally photographed Their photos and their stories, will be displayed publicly at a gallery showing and in a media campaign.  All participants will be provided an invitation to the gallery showing and digital copies of their photos.  The gallery is tentatively scheduled for early October.    

For more information visit:    

Download PDF Press Release Here

The LGBT Center of Hampton Roads to Provide Wellness Services with Walgreens and Planned Parenthood

Norfolk, VAACCESS AIDS Care / The LGBT Center of Hampton Roads is joining with CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers to celebrate the fifth annual LGBT Center Awareness Day on Sunday, September 15, 2013 from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm.

Walgreens will be conducting a Community Off-Site Clinic and offer free flu-shots (limited number of vouchers available for those without insurance) and screenings for blood pressure, body composition, blood glucose, and cholesterol.  Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Virginia will provide screenings for STDs.  A brief introduction to yoga will be provided by Frank Kirchner, the Center’s yoga instructor. Plus, Andrew Hund, owner of Hund's Recycle Factory, will give a presentation on the benefits of bicycling.  More vendors are being added every day. 

“We just celebrated our 2 year anniversary. In the last year, over a thousand people came through the doors of the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) Center of Hampton Roads to participate in social or recreational gatherings, support groups, mental health services, community meetings and informational and educational events.  Clearly the Center is creating an environment where the LGBT community in Hampton Roads feels comfortable and comes to support each other” said Stacie Walls-Beegle, ACCESS AIDS Care’s Executive Director.

LGBT Center Awareness Day showcases the vital role that community centers play in the health, empowerment, strength and cohesiveness of all LGBT communities.  LGBT community centers manage to provide vital resources to 1.7 million people annually. Events will take place at local centers all over the world in celebration of the day.  The Awareness Day also has a civil rights equality push on a national scope, with an organized effort for municipal, county, and state proclamations honoring the day and the work that LGBT centers do, as well as efforts to get individuals everywhere engaged in "personal awareness actions," ranging from wearing a button to visiting a center.

The Center is a program of ACCESS AIDS Care and utilizes a community of volunteers and professionals to achieve its goals of promoting LGBT health and human rights, while providing a SAFE space for area LGBT youth.

ACCESS AIDS Care is dedicated to promoting the health and dignity of those individuals and families impacted by HIV/AIDS.  The agency offers medical care management services, permanent supportive housing, a meals program, transportation services, support groups and clinical mental health services.  For more information on ACCESS AIDS Care or The LGBT Center of Hampton Roads, please visit or call 757.640.0929.

For more information about ACCESS AIDS Care, please visit





HIV Testing Events at Select Walgreens Locations in Hampton Roads
June 27-29



Stacie Walls-Beegle


This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

(757) 640-0929


Monday, June 24, 2013 – ACCESS AIDS Care is teaming up with Walgreens, the nation’s largest pharmacy chain, and Greater Than AIDS, a coalition of public and private sector partners united in response to the domestic epidemic, to provide FREE HIV testing at four Walgreens stores in Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Virginia. The testing events are taking place June 27-29 in support of National HIV Testing Day which is held on June 27th each year.

This will be the first year that Walgreens stores in the Hampton Roads area participate in this campaign.  Locally, almost 7,600 individuals are living with HIV which represents more than 30% of all the cases of HIV/AIDS in the Commonwealth of Virginia.  In 2011, more than 300 local residents were diagnosed with HIV which was more than any other region of the state.  In the U.S., 1.1 million people are living with HIV but an estimated one in five, or nearly a quarter of a million people, does not know their status.

Friday, 13 April 2012 00:00

Condom Nation Big Tour

During the week of April 23rd, AIDS Healthcare Foundation and ACCESS AIDS Care toured Hampton Roads distributing free condoms and offering free HIV testing.  During the tour, over 55,000 condoms were distributed and 86 HIV tests were conducted.

ACCESS AIDS Care would like to thank AHF and our community partners for participating this outreach effort!

Nearly 7,500 Hampton Roads residents are living with HIV/AIDS. Another 1 in 5 are living with HIV and do not even know it yet. Nationwide, there are approximately 48,000 new HIV infections and 19 million new STD infections every year.


“We Were Here” movie showing, one night only, as benefit for ACCESS AIDS Care

NORFOLK- As AIDS agencies worldwide gear up to celebrate the 23rd annual World AIDS Day on December 1, local nonprofit ACCESS AIDS Care sets the stage on the eve of by partnering with Naro Cinema to host a movie showing and discussion panel focused around acclaimed documentary “We Were Here”.


ACCESS AIDS Care receives grant from Centers for Disease Control to provide HIV/AIDS prevention services in Hampton Roads

Norfolk—ACCESS AIDS Care has received grant funding from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to develop new HIV/AIDS prevention programs throughout Hampton Roads.   The project will provide HIV prevention services for Young Men Who Have Sex with Men of Color.  Our efforts will focus on African American young men, 16 to 29 years of age.  


ACCESS AIDS Care receives grant from Elton John AIDS Foundation develop LGBT Service Center in Hampton Roads

Norfolk—ACCESS AIDS Care has received grant funding from the Elton John AIDS Foundation to develop a community center for LGBT services in Hampton Roads. 

This project will provide services with a comprehensive mental health services for all LGBTQ persons. Local survey data and recent stakeholder meetings indicated that the most critical need for the community was the creation of a “gathering place.” This gathering place is needed to house support services for both LGBTQ persons and their significant others (eg. parents, partners) as well as educational programs around legal issues, intimate partner violence, and suicide prevention, especially for our youth. Funding through EJAF will allow for the rental of project space to create the first and only LGBTQ service center in the region. It will serve persons at any point along the life cycle to improve quality of life and assist in empowering individuals and their families.

Court One Office:

248 W. 24th Street
Norfolk, VA 23517
Providing: Care Management, Housing Services, Administrative Support, Outreach, Resource & Development & the Meals Program, HIV Testing



Granby Office:

3309 Granby Street
Norfolk, VA 23504
Providing: HIV Education, Transportation, HIV Testing & Outreach

Hampton / Newport News:

For services, please call 
(757) 722-5511

LGBT Center:

247 W. 25th Street
Norfolk, VA 23517

Providing: Community Meeting Space, Individual & Family Counseling, Resource Center, Adult & Youth Services, Social & Educational Events & FREE HIV Testing