Jake Glaser—A Global Advocate in the Fight Against Pediatric AIDS
This post originally appeared on HealthGoesFemale.com, an organization whose mission is to improve health for women and girls everywhere.
My mom was a fighter. When she, my sister Ariel, and I were diagnosed with HIV in the early 80s, my mother soon discovered that there were virtually no treatment options available for children living with HIV. But she refused to back down. When Ariel lost her battle with AIDS in 1988, my mom gathered together her closest friends and founded the Pediatric AIDS Foundation. She traveled from hospitals to Capitol Hill, from Hollywood to the Oval Office, demanding that children have access to HIV treatments that could save their lives and that researchers focus their attention on the smallest victims of AIDS: children.
Over two decades later, the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation has continued the fight. Working in 15 countries around the globe and supporting 5,400 health care sites, EGPAF has helped more than 16 million women keep themselves and their babies happy, healthy, and HIV free. From providing HIV testing and developing innovative ways to make testing faster and more efficient to offering care and treatment services and the tools to prevent mother-to-child transmission, EGPAF is saving countless lives around the world.
Just like my mom, the mothers who benefit from EGPAF’s services would stop at nothing to save the lives of their children. They walk dozens of miles to remote clinics, take their medications multiple times a day, and educate themselves and their families about HIV. EGPAF, like my mother, is dedicated to working with and supporting these mothers, from the U.S. to Kenya, and around the world.
My mother’s strength, passion and creativity runs through our family. The lessons she shared with me, along with some I’ve picked up along the way, have grown into my new organization called Modern Advocate, which is dedicated to inspiring and educating youth about healthy living and community growth through advocacy and collaborative hands-on programs.
Building creative partnerships throughout the world have created a team of Modern Advocates who work together to engage young people as an empowered community. Alternative sports is our language, healthy living is our credo, and teamwork is our only rule. Working as one - we are unstoppable!
My mom once said that there are moments in which it’s possible to make a change for the better. This is that moment. I have created Modern Advocate for a handful of reasons, and one that is dear to my heart is supporting The Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation and their life saving work. For women and families everywhere, and for my mom, please join our fight. Together, we can create an AIDS-free generation and help every mother have a healthy baby.
Together we can!
Jake Glaser is Elizabeth's son, and an ambassador for the Foundation, based in Los Angeles, CA.