World AIDS Day – A Gala for Good

Submitted by Virginia Department of Health



The World AIDS Day Gala & awareness walk in Norfolk, VA.


On Friday, November 30th Sonya Z. Phillips, Ms. USA Culture Galaxy attended the 13th Annual World AIDS Day Gala which was held on the campus of Eastern Virginia Medical School (EVMS) located in Norfolk, VA.   December 1st is World AIDS Day so to promote HIV and AIDS Awareness, EVMS hosts a gala on the Friday Night closest to that date followed by an awareness walk on the following Saturday Morning.

The World AIDS Day Gala was sponsored by several community supporters of HIV/AIDS Awareness to include: Beauty for Ashes, Beverly Franklin (Decorations), Beverly Norman, City of Virginia Beach Human Services, Electric Eye (Photography), Ernest Smalls (Caterer), Jerome Cuffee (Cake), Michael Singleton, Norfolk Alumni Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., No Sleep Entertainment, Portsmouth Behavioral Health, Self-Protection Awareness, St. Mary’s – Faye Spivey, Teens With A Purpose and Yvonne Lynn.

Throughout the year the gala and walk are planned by a committee of HIV/AIDS organizations such as the Urban League of Hampton Roads, Inc., the International Black Women’s Congress, the LGBTQ Life Center, People Who Care and the EVMS Virginia HIV/AIDS Resource and Consultation Center (VHARCC).  The EVMS VHARCC offers a range of services to healthcare professionals including: Education, Resources, Consultation, Training Programs, Media Materials and Referrals. Other VHARCC Services include: Case Management/Affordable Care Act Assistance (ACA) enrollments; Patient Navigation Services; Emergency Financial & Housing Assistance; Treatment Adherence and PrEP Education for HIV/AIDS Clients. The services are provided through a grant via the Virginia Department of Health. They can be reached by calling 757.446.6170 or visiting their website

Sonya Z. Phillips is the Fashion Designer and Owner of the clothing company Stretch Couture ( She is a member of an elite group of Fashion Designers called “Designers with a Cause” which presented a Fashion Showcase of red garments during the World AIDS Day Gala. Visionary Designers RicLamar and Marcus Christopher, along with up and coming designers infused the concept of fashion and awareness, thus forming  “Designers with a Cause.” Every month they participate in events to create custom color designs for the cause of that month. “Designers with a Cause” is a creative way for the designers to give back to their community through fashion.


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