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Thursday 09 October 2008

Candlelight: "Never Give Up, Never Forget"

Posted in: New Zealand Daily News
By News Staff - 10th May 2008

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Candlelight Memorials in Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin and Invercargill will bring together communities hardest hit by HIV and AIDS for the 25th Anniversary of the Candlelight Memorial on Sunday 18 May.


The international Candlelight Memorial is one of the oldest and largest worldwide events focused on HIV/AIDS awareness and advocacy. The theme for this year is Never Give Up, Never Forget.

With 33 million people estimated to be infected worldwide, the Candlelight Memorial serves as an important uniting intervention among civil society and their governments, breaking down social barriers, and giving hope to future generations.

Eamonn Smythe, International Candlelight Coordinator for the Oceania region, says "This is an opportunity to pay respect to those who are no longer with us, and to give thanks for the support and care available for them in New Zealand. We come together to reflect upon and remember those who have been infected and affected by HIV and AIDS over the past 25 years."

Last year the Candlelight Memorial was commemorated by small and large groups in more than 1,500 events held in 119 countries, including seven events around New Zealand.

This year's official opening ceremony will be held in Lilongwe, Malawi, one of several sub-Saharan African countries hard hit by this disease. However, the first of these 25th anniversary events will be held here in New Zealand.

Candlelight Memorial services will be held on Sunday 18th May 2008:

Auckland – 6.30pm at St Matthew in the City

Hamilton – 7pm at the University of Waikato Chapel

Tauranga – Memorial Park Fountain (cancelled on 15 May 2008)

Wellington – 6.30pm at the Ilott Theatre, Town Hall

Christchurch – 7pm at the Art Centre Great Hall

Dunedin - 7pm at the St Paul's Cathedral, Octagon

Invercargill – 6pm at Bluff Hill.