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The SMART Ride 18 - Register Today!

November 19th - 20th, 2021 |Presented by CAN Community Health| Click here to Register Today.

The Southern Most HIV/AIDS Ride aka SMART Ride started in 2003 with a vision of giving back 100% of every dollar its participants raise to AIDS Service. Since 2003 over $12.4 Million has been raised and 100% of it returned to help those infected, affected or at risk for HIV and AIDS in Florida.

SMART Ride is now the 2nd largest AIDS bicycle ride in the country, and the only one of its size to give back 100%.


Featured stories of promise

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We are in this Fight Together

It's been 26 years since my sister passed. My sister got it from a guy that came out of prison. She was 33 when she passed, I was 34. My sister was the first. My hero was the second, that's my dad. Then my dad’s brother, my uncle and then my stepmom. I guess what hurt me the most was for my father to get it. Being into the church and making us go to church 24 seven and you go out and do this to yourself and then you give it to someone else. Gosh, that's a hurtful thing to do you passing it on to someone else. My stepmother passed maybe about five or six years after he passed.

It became a passion for me. I used to, I questioned God, why me? Why me to do this fight for HIV/AIDS. Then I prayed about it and I said, why not me? That was the journey.

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It’s Caring Enough To Want To Take Care Of Yourself

Do you have any idea what it’s like to have no teeth?

The most impactful decision of my life happened in a split second the day I decided to shoot up meth for the first time. It led to my addiction and the reason why all my teeth fell out. I’m also HIV+ because of it.

Whenever I was getting high, I was having a lot of anonymous, unprotected sex with other men. Using condoms isn’t something that comes to mind when you’re high, and even after I found out I was HIV+, getting high was all I cared about. It allowed me to feel free being gay, and I wasn’t so stuck on my hang-ups. Meth may have temporarily relieved my discomfort with my self-acceptance, but in the long run, I paid a very high price of not only losing my teeth but having to live with HIV for the rest of my life.

 

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