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Makeovers will glam up Big Gay Out

Thu 8 Feb 2007 In: New Zealand Daily News

There's to be free makeovers and red carpet treatment for those attending the Big Gay Out fair day this Sunday, courtesy of the NZAF's Pacific People's Project. Phylesha Brown-Acton and Silipa Take will be glamming up Auckland's annual outdoor fun day for the gay, lesbian, and transgender communities. The Big Gay Out is organised and sponsored by the New Zealand AIDS Foundation and Marquis Condoms as a vehicle for raising HIV awareness, encouraging safe sex behaviour and building strong communities. A total of 13,000 visitors attended last year's event. The NZ AIDS Foundation's Pacific People's Project will be there on the day as part of the ‘Safe Sex Beauties' tent, which provides free makeovers courtesy of the Cut Above Academy, and a red carpet photo opportunity afterwards. “It's a fun way for us to interact with the community, meet new people and promote the safe sex message at the same time,” Phylesha says. 183 new HIV cases were diagnosed in 2005 (the most ever in a single year) and a further 79 in the first half of 2006. Gay and bisexual men continue to be the most at-risk group, comprising more than half of all New Zealanders living with HIV. The Pacific People's Project works to prevent the transmission of HIV among gay/bisexual and transgender Pacific Island communities in New Zealand as well as maintaining links with gay, bisexual and transgender communities within the South Pacific region. Community interaction through high-profile events like the Big Gay Out forms a large part of this work. “HIV is a major issue in the Pacific region, and Auckland is the capital of the Pacific,” Phylesha says. “It's really important that our communities realise that unsafe sex has serious consequences, which can be avoided simply by using condoms and water-based lube, every time.” The Big Gay Out takes place at Coyle Park, Pt Chevalier, in Auckland on Sunday 11 February, from noon till 7pm.     Ref: NZAF (m)

Credit: News Staff

First published: Thursday, 8th February 2007 - 12:00pm

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