Being an HIV 50+ Scholar at USCA 2018 – Part Two

We asked several of the 50+ Strong and Healthy Community Scholars to share their USCA experience with us. This week, we have Miguel Ángel Delgado Ramos of Puerto Rico.

The fact that I was granted a scholarship to participate in the United States Conference on AIDS, and participate in the educational experience for HIV-positive people over 50, meant an important recognition to me as a 64-year-old homosexual man living with HIV for 29 years. It was an honor that I was granted because of the number of people who applied for the scholarship. I accepted the same with great joy, as this is the most important conference for us HIV-positive people, and also with great responsibility. From the moment I submitted the scholarship application, I knew that my commitment to the community would be stronger.

Already, from that moment I began to think about what my response would be once I returned to Puerto Rico, although there were still many weeks left for the conference. My community response due to my participation in USCA was strengthened every day, due to the warmth received from the High Quality Work Team led by Moisés, who monitored me day by day and did not neglect any details. Thank you, Blessings. The program offered for HIV-positive people over 50 was very complete, varied, entertaining, and educational, and selected topics were relevant and emotional. The group was manageable and the presenters were professional.

This experience of USCA 2018? It was the Conference of Conferences: Every detail thought, every need satisfied, The Plenaries unsurpassed. It was extraordinary.

What it Means: Overcoming fears of the language when facing a small group that required my active participation in each moment; Sharing my experience as a positive man over 50; To be moved to tears by shared experiences; I laughed a lot for the curiosities of the and the scholars; I brought a wealth of information, knowledge and experience that I am eager to share in Puerto Rico; the interaction with Paul Kawata. Also, this USCA strengthened my commitment to join the voices that promote the improvement of the quality of life of HIV-positive people in Puerto Rico.