This is seriously disturbing.... any thoughts to how we can get this changed, or at least call some attention to it- maybe through newspapers, or TV media like Ch. 3 news or something? This really scares me, that apathy towards getting AIDS awareness out to a very large number of students on campus... it's just really messed up what the allocations committee is doing.
Please email me if you have any thoughts, suggestions, or if you want to help get things rolling. I'm really upset about this right now, and really want to see if we can do something about what's been done. Pass this on to everyone you know... This is the pandemic of this world, and it should not be ignored or treated so lightly.
Dear PRIDE! Members,
For the past several weeks we have been working very hard planning several events which would take place the second week of April to commemorate National AIDS Awareness Week. Through our efforts, we have formed a coalition of 26 student organizations, all willing to donate their time and support for this series of events, as well as host events of their own. These events would range from the showing of films and documentaries to benefit concerts and speakers and would be beneficial to all students on this campus. The grand component of this week was going to be an AIDS memorial which would consist of 25,000 names on note cards on Popsicle sticks which would be placed in the ground as a temporary monument displayed down the hill on Front Campus. Each night of the week, we would hold a vigil at this memorial, and it would help to show the students of this campus how real and how deadly HIV really is. We were also going to make many stunning posters which would consist of black and white photographs of students with a red ribbon somewhere on their body. These posters would also contain information on HIV testing and educational information about HIV and AIDS. The total cost of the memorial came to just above $5000, and included materials and printing costs. We presented to the allocations committee, who immediately told us that this was an absurd amount of money to pay "just for paper".
Throughout their deliberation they cut our costs down to just over $2000, a cut of over $3000. They tried to get the price down more. They asked us why our 23 cosponsors (which they were aware of) did not donate money to the cause, and we explained that the student groups do not have that much money, and that is why the allocations committee exists. They did not understand why the red ribbons, an AIDS
awareness symbol comparable to the pink ribbon of Breast Cancer Awareness, were important on the posters and suggested that we color the ribbons in with sharpie markers. We explained that this was an awareness and memorial week, and that we wanted these posters to be as professional and to be shown with as much integrity as possible.
After much debate, the committee finally voted five to four to deny allocations for an event which was sponsored by 26 campus organizations, the only event which was denied at this meeting. They did not give us an answer as to why we were denied funding, and they ended the semester with $15000 worth of unused funds. It is the allocation committee's job to allocate funds for programs which they believe to be in the students' best interests. It is their job to allocate funds for programs which they believe will be beneficial to the students of the university. It is their job to allocate funds for programs which they believe will be highly attended and worth the cost. This memorial fits all of those categories, and I can see no reason that they believe the students of this campus would not want to see this memorial if there was already strong support from 26 organizations. Their decision is confusing and disturbing to all of us who had worked so hard for this cause. We can not understand how they can be so apathetic toward such an important cause. As of now, we have no means of creating this memorial, but we plan on finding a way of creating it regardless. The head of the allocations committee is the Senator for Business and Finance, Kevin Folk (330-672-3207 or email@example.com). Your support during this time would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time. Below is a list of sponsors and cosponsors for this event.
PRIDE! Kent Secretary
1. PRIDE! Kent
2. Black United Students
3. Feminist Union
4. College Democrats
5. Kent Interhall Council
6. The Dive
8. Anti-Racist Action
10. Kent Neo Pagan Coalition
11. International Film Society
12. United Christian Ministries
13. National Association of Black Journalists
14. Kent Prez
15. National Association for Multicultural Education
16. BACCHUS (Health Student Group)
17. Zen-Do (Buddhist Student Organization)
18. Physics Students Association
19. Students of Scholarship
20. Circle K
22. Project Sound (Programming Group)
23. Zeta Phi Beta Sorority
24. The Vages (Feminist Group)
25. Lazy Afternoon Press (Writer's Group)
26. Renaissance Club