South Asian AIDS Action (SAAA) Records

Collection Overview

Date Range: 1990-1998
Geographical Coverage: New York City, New York
Language(s): English (13), Tamil (2), Urdu (1), Hindi (1), Punjabi (1), Uncategorized (87)
Number of Items: 105
Item Types: Photograph (85), Newspaper Clipping (5), Correspondence (3), Poster (1), Uncategorized (11)
Collection Creator: South Asian AIDS Action (SAAA)
Donor(s): Radhika Balakrishnan

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About the Collection

Collection Description
The bulk of the collection consists of photographs of workshops, meetings, events and other direct actions that South Asian AIDS Action (SAAA) members either organized or participated in. Newspaper clippings, from a variety of publications, and letters detail SAAA involvement in HIV/AIDS educational projects and events, including political demonstrations.

Biographical History
Active from 1990 through 1997, South Asian AIDS Action (SAAA) was involved in HIV/AIDS education and prevention within the South Asian communities of the greater New York City area. Their work included distributing literature on HIV prevention (both in English and several of the major South Asian languages), conducting workshops and creating networks of concerned medical professionals, journalists and activists, all with the goal of encouraging more open discussion of sexual and cultural issues in the context of the health of the local South Asian Diaspora. SAAA, especially in its earlier days, worked with like-minded groups in Chicago, Delhi, London, San Francisco and Toronto. SAAA started in 1990 as "India AIDS Actions," due to the group's initial focus on stopping the AIDS prevention bill in India. They successfully organized protests in six cities in four countries on the same day and convinced the World Bank to make sure grant-receivers provided services in the languages used their target recepients. Turning their focus on increasing HIV/AIDS awareness in the U.S., SAAA then developed and translated materials and held community educator trainings. They conducted HIV educational activities with taxi drivers in NYC as well as with local community groups and distributed material in areas of denser South Asian population, such as the Jackson Heights neighborhood in Queens, night clubs with a large South Asian Diaspora community and city universities. In 1997, SAAA folded their work into the Apicha Community Health Center (originally known as the Asian and Pacific Islander Coalition on HIV/AIDS), when the Manhattan-based Center hired a person to work in the South Asian community specifically.

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Related Materials

Collection Themes: Activism (9), Community Media (1), Uncategorized (95)

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Administrative Information

Access & Use: Items in this SAADA collection are open for research. Items may not be sold or redistributed, copied or distributed as a photograph, electronic file, or any other media without express written consent from the copyright holder and the South Asian American Digital Archive (SAADA). The user is responsible for all issues of copyright.

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