Tag Archives: hiv

ACT WITHOUT EXPECTATION

We live in a society where the cultural norm is to give with the expectation of receiving.

I call it the “what’s in it for me?” syndrome.

Although this doesn’t change my mind about moving there, as much as I love California, that attitude was one that I noticed to be most prominent of many during my visits. I know that it’s not just Cali but worldwide. Especially in America, unfortunately.

In these situations I  can’t help but to wonder what happen to “giving to give”? Whether it be information, referrals, advice or monetary support.

I often meet people that respond to my candidness of sharing information as unbelievable and even questioning my “expertise”, as if to think there’s no way I can have knowledge in so many different areas (thankfully I live outside the box). Going deeper, when I volunteer my time to help children and those less fortunate that I, I’m simply helping just to help. I can care less about what looks good on my resume, or capturing images of me volunteering… I just want to make a difference in the lives of others.

When I launched a campaign for Keep a Child Alive, I did just that. Despite the fact that my initial introduction to the organization was a result of my research for Alicia Keys contact information in order to interview her about her “No-Makeup Movement“, I saw the significance and wanted to be involved.

I said all that to say, please consider giving to my campaign without the expectation of getting something in return. Knowing that you’re helping to make a difference in the lives of children and families affected by HIV is life transforming for those on the receiving end.

So I ask that, for a moment, we maneuver out of our bubbles and give to those in need. I hope that you will join me in successfully funding my campaign for Keep a Child Alive and other organizations you feel most passionate about. Please show your support (with a little as $5) here. My campaign ends approximately at 11:59pm on World AIDS Day, Thursday December 1, 2016.

Thank you,
Alyscia Cunningham

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I’m Launching a KCA Campaign!

A few weeks ago I received a Google alert about Alicia Keys and her stance on her #NoMakeup movement. In the recent past, a few celebrities spoke out against Photoshop manipulation but for the first time a celebrity has gained a significant amount of attention and admiration for a major lifestyle shift that is typically deemed as unacceptable in the Hollywood world.

Porait of of Alicia Keys
Photo copyright © Zoltán Tombor (for Fault Magazine).

Although our children learn about self-love and acceptance through their close family relationships (and in turn with themselves) public figures have a profound influence in the lives of our youth. This makes it so much more important that celebrities use their voice as positive platforms for much needed change.

Given that my focus as an author, filmmaker and photographer is about natural beauty, it was only natural that I reach out to Alicia Keys for an interview.

In the process of researching her agent and PR company, I found Keep A Child Alive (KCA), an organization, co-founded by Alicia Keys, that partner with grass-roots organizations to combat the physical, social and economic impact of HIV on children and families in Africa and India.

After diving into my research about KCA (I completely forgot about the interview and focused on the mission of the organization) I discovered the organization also encompasses youth empowerment. The youth-led peer support groups are helping young people living with HIV access support and confidence that they need to live healthy lives and build bright futures.

I immediately wanted to get involved. It’s all about empowerment… and that’s my focus.

About $1,000 covers a year’s worth of programming for a youth peer support group. With that in mind, I decided to launch a campaign that focuses on positive message for the youth in the youth-led support groups. My goal is to raise $3,000, which will cover programming for about 3 youth groups.

I will film 30-60 second videos of individuals voicing their message of encouragement for the children. Something similar to the recent video I filmed about beauty.

Here’s how you can help make this campaign a success…

  1. I need 20 individuals willing to volunteer a short amount of time (literally 5 minutes) to be filmed for the videos. Family members and friends… I will be calling you first.
  2. Donate to the campaign once I launch it. Instead of charging a fee to be filmed and edited, I ask that you please help fund the campaign and make it a success.
  3. Share, share, share! The more you can share on your platforms, the most it will gain more attention and go viral (that’s the goal).

It’s that simple!

KCA’s Black Ball will take place on Wednesday October 19, 2016. I will launch my campaign on Wednesday October 12, 2016, a week prior to the Ball. If happen to live or plan on visiting the New York City area, please considering purchasing a ticket for KCA’s Black Ball.

My campaign will end on World Aids Day, December 1, 2016 at approximately 11:59pm. No amount is too small and anything you can give is appreciated. Please be on the lookout for my newsletter about my campaign going live!