The OPSEU Live and Let Live Fund exists to support agencies fighting the ravages of HIV/AIDS both in Africa and at home.
This disease is destroying the way of life of many African nations. Parents are dying from HIV/AIDS, leaving grandparents to raise infants and
children, some of whom are also infected. An entire generation of productive workers is afflicted, leaving many African societies in disarray. Family structures, education, housing and health care are unraveling fast. African peoples need help to combat the devastation of the disease.
Here in Canada, the challenges are different. HIV/AIDS can be managed. There is no cure, but a person’s life can be extended for several years. Still, not all Canadians have access to the expensive drugs required. Nor can they get skilled care when they are very ill. And children and young people still need
We cannot ignore the suffering of others. We share a common humanity with our neighbours across the globe, no matter what their personal faith or political beliefs. That’s why delegates to the 2003 OPSEU Convention voted unanimously to create the Live and Let Live Fund. Since the 2003 Convention, members have embarked
on fundraising projects in OPSEU locals around the province. We can make a difference!
How does the Fund work?
All donations to the Fund are kept in a separate account. OPSEU members may make individual contributions, or a Local may vote to make an annual lump sum donation. Money collected by Locals is matched by OPSEU Central and disbursed twice a year to agencies and projects working directly with HIV/AIDS sufferers.
Where does the money go?
Seventy-five per cent of the money raised by the Live and Let Live Fund goes to African organizations, chosen in partnership with the Stephen Lewis Foundation to identify the most suitable projects. Twenty-five per cent of funds go to worthy programs in Ontario.
How can I get more involved?
· Get creative! Your Local could organize a carwash, 50-50 draws, a bingo – you name it! – to raise money for the Fund
· One community college local recently won a grievance and had management pay into the Live and Let Live Fund as settlement.
· Consider volunteering at an agency that helps people living with HIV/AIDS. Use your skills for such diverse activities as helping with a newsletter or building a ramp.
· Talk to your colleagues about contributing one cent per month of Local earnings to the Fund. Bring this up at a Local meeting and discuss it as a group.
· Sell the HIV/AIDS red lapel pins (available from OPSEU) and send the proceeds to the Fund.
· Watch the OPSEU web site for news about a province-wide fundraising event.