As a member of Realize, I truly believe that the organization is doing good work, in general and especially in the area of resilience among Older MSM in Canada.
As an Asian aging gay poz man, there are times when I face stigma and discrimination because of my HIV status and at times, based on my ethnic background. During this period of COVID-19, many gay poz Asian men were so worried that they would be marginalized even more based of their race and HIV status. Many of them simply choose to isolate themselves for over 5 months which led to some degree of mental health instability, plus uncertainty about knowing where to get support and resources. I have always done as much as I can to support my community and I will certainly continue to do what is within my capacity to check in with them via telephone or virtual platform on a daily basis.
This so-called ‘new normal’ can be viewed as a litmus test to see whether we still genuinely care and love each other. I encourage all my peers to be strong and optimistic. I feel the community can continue to demonstrate understanding and compassion towards people who are vulnerable and marginalized, especially those from racialized communities.
We know that Realize will continue to play its part at the national level and that is reassuring!
Interested in becoming a Realize member?
We need your voice at the table. Fill out a membership application (Word document or online) via this link or contact us to find out how your membership in Realize can improve the lives of people living with HIV and/or other episodic disabilities – as well as your own life.