ACAS October 2013 Update
Though the weather has cooled off, ACAS has been busy engaging various community members this past month.
On Oct 1, ACAS held an “Asian Migrant Farm Workers (AMFWs): HIV Knowledge, Practices, and Healthcare” Forum funded by the Ontario HIV Treatment Network (OHTN) aimed for service providers of AIDS service organizations, sexual health educators, healthcare providers, policy makers, post secondary students, and interested community members in international migration and health issues. Participants not only got an opportunity to hear real-life stories from Asian migrant farmworkers, but they also engaged in rich discussions on labour issues and immigration policies related to migrant farm workers. As a leader and advocate on AMFW issues, ACAS also shared its report on sexual health, HIV knowledge and healthcare of AMFWs from its community-based research project. We sincerely thank all those who had attended the forum.
Over $20,000 raised! Thanks for all your support, generous donations, and the commitment of our 26 runners and walkers, ACAS has exceeded our fundraising goal for the year and raised a total of $20,120.91 at the 2013 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon, Half-Marathon and 5k! We could not have done it without the generosity, dedication, and energy shown by our supporters, donors and race participants.
This year, ACAS has a total of six teams of walkers and runners to raising funds for the agency. Competition has been extremely tight amongst. In the end, the ACAS Men’s Program Team, Fast and Furious, overtook the Women’s Program Team by a small margin. The funds raised will ensure that our East and Southeast Asian service users living with HIV/AIDS can continue to receive the much needed culturally and linguistically appropriate services they need.
For example, the ACAS Support Program had been able to hold an health focused retreat for services users living with HIV at the Ecology Retreat Centre in Orangeville, ON with the funds we had raised at last year’s Scotia Run fundraising event along with support from pharmaceutical companies. With your support, we will commit to providing quality and individualized services to our service users and empower them through providing social support opportunities through groups such as ALPHA, increasing their holistic health knowledge through the health promotion workshops, and offering complementary an array of complementary therapies including acupuncture and massage therapy services.
From the bottom of our hearts, we would like to say once again, “Thank you!”
The newly elected ACAS Board and some of the staff attended the ACAS Board/Staff Retreat the weekend of October 26th in lovely Port Stanton. We not only recounted the history of ACAS in our 19th year in existence and brainstormed on how we can better continue our work in serving the Asian HIV and LGBTQ communities, but we are also gearing up for our 20the anniversary next year. A lot were accomplished and we are very excited about the upcoming year to create more positive impact.
The club crowd must have been pleased and had fun interacting with our ACAS outreach team at two very hot events this month. First, we showed our support and warm welcome to DJ Big Kid from Asia at Fly Night Club on October 12 to a night of amazing tribal tech house beats. The next party ACAS outreached at was the wonderful and jam-packed costume crowd at the AX: Halloween Edition party at the Phoenix on Oct 26th just before Halloween!
For the film-loving crowd, ACAS was one of the proud community partners for the screening of Dal Puri Diaspora by Richard Fung at Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival. Richard Fung has been a strong community leader and supporter of ACAS since its inception, and we want to say we are very proud of his achievements. Congratulations, Richard!
Happy Trick or Treat! Everyone at ACAS hope you had an enjoyable and safe Halloween! We would like to especially thank all the hard working volunteers who helped us distribute over 1000 condoms in less than 2 hours at our annual Halloween Outreach. At ACAS, we are all about promoting healthy sexuality. We sincerely hope all the party revelers got a wonderful “trick” or “treat” this year!