Grammy-Nominated Recording Artist Raheem DeVaughn and R&B Vocalist Goapele Join Forces with AHF and South Side Help Center to Promote Women’s Sexual Health and Responsibility with the RISE Above Campaign

Congresswoman Robin Kelly [IL-2] To Speak at Saturday, June 17 event

CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Grammy-nominated R&B recording artist Raheem DeVaughn
and R&B/neo-soul artist Goapele have joined forces with AIDS
Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the Reed For Hope Foundation,
WORLD and Chicago-based South Side Help Center (SSHC) to present “RISE
Above”, a national sexual health awareness campaign, on Saturday, June
th at 7:00 p.m. at Park West, located at 322
West Armitage Ave.
This “women’s only” event is free and open to the
public, but attendees must register online for tickets at Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and seating is on a
first-come, first-served basis.

The event will feature an intimate evening of live performances,
conversation, free massages, giveaways and more.

Inspired by the late Dr. Maya Angelou’s powerful and impactful poem, “Still
I Rise”,
the RISE Above campaign focuses on eliminating
HIV-related stigma by educating and empowering women of color about
healthy relationships, sexuality and wellness.
Launched in Oakland,
CA in early March 2017 as a part of National Women & Girls HIV/AIDS
Awareness Day, the campaign will come to Chicago on Saturday, June 17
prior to National HIV/AIDS Testing Day (June 27)

On September 21, the RISE Above campaign tour will also hold an event in
Cleveland, OH before culminating in Atlanta, GA in early November.

Heart & Soul magazine, a national publication dedicated to
the health and well-being of women of color, has signed on as a national
media partner for the campaign.

According to current statistics from the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention (CDC), 1 in 4 individuals living with HIV in the United
States are women
. Black/African American and Hispanic/Latina women
continue to be disproportionately affected by HIV
, compared with
women of other races/ethnicities. Of the total estimated number of
women living with diagnosed HIV at the end of 2013, 61% (137,504) were
African American
, 17% (39,177) were white, and 17% (38,664) were

“Across our country, women of color from all backgrounds continue to be
impacted disproportionately by HIV and other sexually transmitted
infections,” said Vanessa Smith, executive director of
South Side Help Center. “As we celebrate 30 years of service to
communities across Chicago, we are pleased to have our own Congresswoman
Robin Kelly, who recently co-founded the Congressional Black Caucus on
Black Women & Girls, join us for this event. We’re also excited to
partner with Goapele and Raheem DeVaughn, two amazing artists who are
using their visibility to bring awareness to these issues. Bringing
together black women and inspiring them to break through stigma and
become both sexually educated and empowered to ‘rise above HIV’ is a
goal we all share.”

To learn more about the RISE Above HIV campaign go to
For a special message from the artists visit:

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the largest global AIDS
organization, currently provides medical care and/or services to over
700,000 individuals in 38 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin
America/Caribbean, the Asia/Pacific Region and Eastern Europe. To learn
more about AHF, please visit our website:,
find us on Facebook:
and follow us on Twitter: @aidshealthcare and Instagram: @aidshealthcare

WORLD (‘Women Organized to Respond to Life-threatening Diseases’)
is a diverse organization for, by, and about women living with, and at
risk for, HIV/AIDS. WORLD improves the lives and health of women, girls,
families and communities affected by HIV through peer-based education,
wellness services, advocacy, and leadership development. We envision a
world where women, girls, and families affected by HIV and AIDS have the
tools, support, and knowledge to live healthy and productive lives with
dignity. Our vision is rooted in a commitment to human rights and
wellness with the understanding that this includes freedom from
violence; access to housing; quality healthcare; food security;
physical, spiritual and emotional wellbeing; education and economic

South Side Help Center (SSHC) For 30 years, South Side Help
Center has provided critical services to help negate the incidence and
impact of HIV/AIDS in Chicago’s communities of color. Initially founded
in 1987 with the goal of educating the African-American religious
community so it could be sensitive to the needs of people impacted by
HIV/AIDS, SSHC’s services have evolved to include HIV/AIDS outreach and
direct care services and a comprehensive range of youth and capacity
building programs to help people of all ages embrace a lifestyle of
prevention against mental, physical and social ills by providing
positive, healthy alternatives so that community residents can lead
productive lives. Serving people and strengthening communities is its
mission. In March, 2015, SSHC became an affiliate of AIDS Healthcare
Foundation further strengthening its ability to fulfill this goal. To
learn more about the programs and services of SSHC visit

improve the vitality of the global village by changing specific cultural
attitudes about wellness, disease prevention and health disparities
through the strategic implementation of messages that impact pop
culture. We aim to inspire our friends, our partners and our communities
to join us in raising our voices on targeted health issues while
bringing focus, action and HOPE to causes that enhance the quality of
living for all.


AIDS Healthcare Foundation
Imara Canady, Regional Director,
Communications and Community Engagement, AHF Southern Bureau
+1.954.952.0258 mobile
A. Kizart-Hampton
President, GreatWorks! Integrated Communications
for South Side Help Center
+1.800.492.9616 work