FAWN strengthens partnerships in preparation for World AIDS Day on Thursday, Dec. 1

Submitted by WSU Applebaum Fighting AIDS with Nutrition

Each Dec. 1, World AIDS Day presents an opportunity for people across the globe to unite in the fight against HIV, to show support for people living with HIV, and to commemorate those who have died from an AIDS-related illness. Founded in 1988, World AIDS Day was the first-ever global health day.

FAWN members with donations
FAWN student pharmacists collecting donations of liquid nutrition, from left: Brian Globerman, President Lucas Crum and Community Outreach Co-director Zachary Grossklaus.

This year's theme is Putting Ourselves to the Test: Achieving Equity to End HIV. It encourages people to unite globally to eliminate the disparities and inequities that create barriers to HIV testing, prevention and access to HIV care. First observed in 1988, World AIDS Day is a day to unite to help end HIV and remember those lost to AIDS-related illnesses.

To commemorate World AIDS Day this year, WSU Applebaum's Fighting AIDS with Nutrition (FAWN) student organization is once again organizing events on campus to spread awareness about the HIV/AIDS epidemic and support its global and local outreach programs that help patients living with HIV/AIDS.

Since 2001, FAWN has helped those affected by HIV to battle the disease using liquid nutrition as a powerful weapon. They first partnered with local churches near Johannesburg, South Africa, and Sephare Village, Botswana, to provide thousands of AIDS patients with the life-giving nutrition that is so critically needed for their survival. Through the help of FAWN's partners, including World Medical Relief and the Wayne State University Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, FAWN has sent shipments of liquid nutrition over the last several years. Since ministering to AIDS patients in Sub-Saharan Africa, FAWN has expanded their outreach to other countries across the globe and have also started providing liquid nutrition to those living with HIV/AIDS in the local metro Detroit area.

World AIDS Day event flyer

"I joined FAWN first as a volunteer. Their philanthropic activities and focus on HIV patients provided a perfect outlet for my desire to get out into the community and do some good while utilizing my pharmacy knowledge," said FAWN President Lucas Crum. "FAWN is a great organization to join because it serves dual functions as both a professional and philanthropic organization. Being active in FAWN is a great chance to get involved with local and international charity structures, get to know various HIV clinics, network with health care professionals, and learn more about how HIV is treated."

Furthermore, FAWN's partnerships educate citizens on the science behind liquid nutrition and its effect on the AIDS virus as well as how to stop the spread of the virus. During WSU Applebaum's organization hour on World AIDS Day on Thursday, Dec. 1, FAWN will hold an IPPE-approved webinar featuring Frank Julian, PharmD, on the importance of liquid nutrition in HIV. FAWN's student pharmacists will also hand out red ribbons, the internationally recognized symbol for AIDS awareness, worn throughout the year in support of people living with HIV and in remembrance of those who have died.

Fighting AIDS with Nutrition in Need of Donations of Liquid Nutrition

Leading up to World AIDS Day, FAWN has been collecting donations for liquid nutrition for its community outreach programs locally and abroad. Each box of liquid nutrition costs approximately $55, and student organizations have agreed in cash or in kind to support FAWN's life-saving initiative. So far, WSU Applebaum organizations that have committed to sponsoring a box of liquid nutrition include the Student Pharmacists Diversity Council, Student National Pharmaceutical Association, Industry Pharmacists Organization and Kappa Psi Pharmaceutical Fraternity.

"Patients with HIV/AIDS are at higher risk of malnutrition. Not only that, but proper nutrition can also reduce the side effects of antiretroviral therapy and improve the efficacy of HIV treatment," added Crum. "Liquid nutrition provides a reliable and easy source of nutrition for HIV/AIDS patients who may not be able to fully support themselves through their normal diet alone. FAWN is grateful for all our donors who help provide liquid nutrition for our patients."

FAWN is still in need of donations to keep its liquid nutrition outreach program going. To donate for liquid nutrition, please email FAWN Secretary Victoria Espinoza.

Supporting World Medical Relief 69th Anniversary Gala

WMR Gala
Top, from left: FAWN Vice President Joseph Paul Javier, FAWN board member Dr. Geralyn Smith, FAWN CEO Pastor Frank Julian, Peggy Julian and FAWN Secretary Victoria Espinoza. Below left: World Medical Relief CEO Dr. George Samson with board member and Wayne State pharmacy program alumna Nidhal Garmo. Below right: World Medical Relief and FAWN board member pharmacist Greg Baise with his wife, Edith.

World Medical Relief is a major FAWN partner, responsible for storing liquid nutrition stocks and shipping these donations to HIV/AIDS patients in need in countries all over the world. FAWN's executive board was on hand to celebrate World Medical Relief's 69th Anniversary Gala last week at St. John's Armenian Church in Southfield. Supporting WMR's mission of distributing surplus medical equipment and medicines to those in need, attendees helped raise over $20,000 at the gala celebration.

"Attending the World Medical Relief Gala was a wonderful experience. I enjoyed the performances, the new friendships I made and raising funds for a good cause," said Espinoza. "People living with HIV/AIDS can struggle to get the proper nutrition they need along with financial hardships. Having partnerships like that between FAWN and World Medical Relief helps those in need and saves lives. FAWN is always in need of more liquid nutrition to support our programs. All this is possible because of the generosity of others who are willing to give and support our philanthropic work."

For more information about how you can support FAWN or World Medical Relief, please contact WMR Chaplain and FAWN CEO Frank Julian.

About us

The Doctor of Pharmacy program at Wayne State University is a four-year curriculum in the heart of Detroit. Approximately 100 students are enrolled in each year of the program. WSU Applebaum information meetings for prospective students take place at 6 p.m. on the first Tuesday of each month. The application process for the Doctor of Pharmacy program begins each July.

An anchor in urban health care

The Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is built on more than 100 years of tradition and innovation in the heart of Detroit. We have grown deep roots in our city, harnessing its powerhouse hospital systems and community service organizations as vibrant, real-world training grounds for students, with an ongoing focus on social justice in health care. And our research at all levels - from undergraduates to veteran faculty members - translates into creative solutions for healthier communities.

Wayne State University is a premier urban research institution offering approximately 350 academic programs through 13 schools and colleges to more than 25,000 students.

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