HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - A Hattiesburg organization which provides housing, HIV testing and case management for those infected with and affected by HIV/AIDS celebrated 10 years of service Saturday morning. The AIDS Services Coalition hosted its annual, Walk for Life at Trinity Episcopal Church.
More than 200 people took part in the event.
The AIDS Services Coalition began in 2003 as a ministry of Trinity Episcopal Church.
"It touched my heart when a lady from my church recently passed from AIDS, she was a strong leader," said Ricsha Warren, a walk participant. "I try to do it every year, because this is where my heart goes out to and I just enjoy doing it and meeting a lot of people," she said.
HIV is very, very common in Mississippi," said Dr. Luis Marcos, a physician with Hattiesburg Clinic who also participated in the walk. "In fact, this is the fifth state with the highest number of new cases with HIV. And it's a big problem and we have to speak up, because we can take care of them, we can take care of people with HIV. It's not a big deal today," he said.
The event concluded with a a memorial service and picnic.