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IMPACT In The News

Reports & Findings

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IMPACT Releases Comprehensive #IMPACTHIV Year-End Report on National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

Published: February 7, 2013 | Download PDF Report: Here

Abstract: The report details the scope of the HIV/AIDS epidemic among young minorities and provides IMPACT’s strategy to foster active engagement with young professionals throughout the year. Specifically, IMPACT intends to leverage their social media reach to increase awareness of resources and statistics to educate, inform, and spark conversations amongst young professionals of color; challenge youth populations to get tested at least twice yearly; and develop an international engagement program for young professionals in the United States to raise cognizance about the HIV/AIDS issues in Africa.

To date, HIV/AIDS remains a serious health challenge globally and, in particular, for young minorities in the United States. Of the nearly one million people living with HIV/AIDS in the United States, seven percent are youth, many of whom are unaware that they have the virus. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 25 percent of people who do not know their HIV/AIDS status are responsible for 50 to 70 percent of new HIV infections. In addition, almost half of new infections among youth occur in African American males, and of the 500,000 people infected with HIV each year, one in four is between 13 to 24 years old.

“The unconscionable effect that HIV/AIDS has caused in communities of color not only in the U.S., but globally, was the genesis for the #IMPACTHIV initiative,” said Nina Smith, IMPACT’s Deputy Director. “Through our vast network of young professionals committed to enacting change in their community, IMPACT is taking an integral role to empower our peers to envision and create a world free of HIV and AIDS in our lifetime.”

Throughout 2012 and 2013, IMPACT has created an agenda of events to continue the momentum of the #IMPACTHIV campaign including, hosting the “Champions of Change” reception during the 2012 International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., which honored 14 individuals for their efforts to eradicate HIV/AIDS in communities of color. One honoree, Lisa Bediako, of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation also participated in the #IMPACTHIV Twitter chat on National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day to educate and encourage young professionals to create change in their respective communities. Bediako was joined by Dr. Rani Whitfield, the Hip Hop Doc, the Magic Johnson Foundation, the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc., The National Hispanic Council on Aging, and the official host organization for National Black HIV/AIDS Day, Healthy Black Communities, Inc. Participants answered questions pertaining to HIV/AIDS as well as learn about the importance of testing, reducing the HIV/AIDS stigma, and informing their peer groups about important risk factors.

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IMPACT RELEASES #VOTEREADY COMPREHENSIVE REPORT: Report Highlights Efforts to Combat Voter Suppression and Ensure Ballot Access

Published: February. 27, 2013 | Download PDF Report: Here

Abstract: As part of its #VoteReady campaign, IMPACT released its 2012 year-end report on the organization’s efforts to combat voter suppression and guarantee ballot access for young professionals of color during this past election cycle. The report is unveiled as arguments will be heard today in the Supreme Court in Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder, a case that challenges key provisions in the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

During the 2012 presidential election after recognizing the potential for voter suppression across the country, IMPACT launched #VoteReady, a campaign to inform and empower young professionals of color about their voting rights. Goals included registering eligible voters ages 40 and under, re-registering voters, encouraging early and absentee voting, educating peers about onerous voter ID laws, and leveraging social media to raise awareness and educate voters about how to exercise your right to vote. Specifically, the campaign utilized social media, including holding Super Twitter Tuesday Town Halls; targeted students with an IMPACT toolkit; and researched the impact of newly-enacted voter suppression laws to inform the broader public policy debate.

Partners of the #VoteReady campaign included the Congressional Black Caucus, Coalition for Black Civic Participation, Lawyer’s Committee on Civil Rights, AARP, SEIU, as well as celebrities and other notable figures including the Reverend Al Sharpton. In all, over a ten week period, IMPACT generated nearly 19 million impressions reaching an audience of almost 6 million followers through its Twitter town halls. In addition, through the IMPACT College Series, the organization supported efforts across ten college campuses to prepare young people to cast their ballots for the first time.

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