Ktla News

Thousands Participate in AIDS Walk Despite Wet Weather


October 17, 2010

HOLLYWOOD-- Thousands toughed it through the streets of West Hollywood in the rain Sunday morning all to be a part of the 26th Annual AIDS Walk.

The 6.2 mile walk kicked off at 10:00 a.m. Sunday in West Hollywood Park where an estimated 30,000 supporters, including several celebrities and politicians, gathered to raise money.

About 60,000 people in Los Angeles are affected by HIV and AIDS, and more than 33 million suffer from the pandemic worldwide.

This year's AIDS Walk comes just days after the announcement of a $52 million budget cut to California's HIV/AIDS care and prevention programs.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa spoke at the event, reminding participants to keep up hope despite the lack of public funding dedicated to the cause.

"When i was in the leg in 1995 we were leading the country in AIDS programs," Villaraigosa said, "It is demoralizing but that's why we walk today."

The walk is expected to bring in $3 million to help low-income Angelenos living with HIV and AIDS.

In the walk's 26 years, it established itself as one of the biggest fundraisers for AIDS in the nation, bringing in a total of $66 million.