Sa'id Abdur Rahman
60 years young and with diagnosed in 1991, Sa'id holds a Bachelors in Human Services and Masters in Social and Public Policy with Advanced Degree in Community and Human Services. He has worked with disenfranchised and marginalized populations since 1997 and had extensive experience with HIV/AIDS education. Sa'id is presently employed with Gay Men's Health Crisis (GMHC) which is the first HIV/AIDS Advocacy Group in New York State. He is passionate, determined and dedicated.
Sa'id is passionate about joining RAHMA due to his advocacy. He knows what it's like to feel shame, to feel out of place, as if he doesn't belong. Sa'id believes the gifts he has been given were given so that he can be a voice to those who are voiceless. He expects to bring an unyielding energy, an ability to communicate with all people across the spectrum, along with an ability to develop an curriculum and market. Sa'id has experienced everything from addiction, homelessness and incarceration, and is extremely proud of who he is and what he has been able to overcome.
HIV-positive for more than three decades, Bryan Jones, a same gender - loving Black Muslim man, has been an effective community activist throughout, giving voice to the most vulnerable (the incarcerated and racial and sexual minorities), provided shelter for many, and struggled to expand all their rights. Bryan’s tireless efforts include membership on the Campaign-to-End AIDS and the Ryan White Planning Council and Consumer Advisory Board. He also founded “Gentlemen’s Quarterly,” one of the largest gay, bi and same gender-loving HIV-positive men’s support groups in Ohio. He performs in a powerful autobiographical musical “A.I.D.S (And I Die Slowly)”on his life, while positive, which inspires audiences everywhere. Bryan has opened his own home to several young transgender women and gay, bi and other MSM, providing a safe haven while pursuing housing and treatment for them. He has volunteered in South Africa doing HIV outreach, and has organized roundtable discussions with LGBTQ community members on improving outreach efforts. For example, he recently began organizing the transgender community in the Detroit Shoreway area and expanding outreach prevention strategies at the garden valley neighborhood, targeting sex workers, drug injectors, and others at heightened HIV risk. He also facilitated HIV support groups in various Ohio prisons and spearheaded mobilizing the HIV Criminalization Law Reform Ohio working group. As the 2016 recipient of the Trailblazer Award for lifelong commitment to the LGBTQ community/HIV/AIDS.
Bryan is clearly making a difference in the lives of not only those in Ohio who are most vulnerable to HIV but also on a regional, national and global level.
RAHMA has been the piece of the puzzle that was missing from Bryan's life. It reassures him that can be a person living with AIDS and have a personal relationship with Allah (SWT). Early on in Bryan's diagnosis he had to abandon his faith because of the lack of compassion about HIV/AIDS. RAHMA has given Bryan the vehicle to educate Muslims about HIV and AIDS, and to let them know there is no shame in being HIV positive.
I am Sharon Bey but I prefer to be called Jamila. I am a lifelong resident of Philadelphia, Pa. I was diagnosed with HIV in 1990. I have been in recovery since 1999 with the help of COMHAR’s TRIAD and a twelve step program, I learned tools to stay clean and on track. I attended the Project TEACH program run by Philly FIGHT, which teaches HIV+ people about how the virus affects the body and the importance of adherence to ART. I trained as a HIV tester & counselor with AACO which enabled me to test people for HIV.
I became employed as a certified HIV Counselor & Tester at BEBASHI and worked there for 3 years. I moved on to the Mazzoni Center and became an HIV Prevention Specialist for the next three years.
I attained my BA in Criminal Justice in 2010 from Saint Leo University in Saint Leo Florida. I attended Post University’s Graduate School of Human Services. I am a member of the Positive Women’s Network (PWN), which teaches leadership and advocacy skills to women that are HIV+. I became a Certified Peer Specialist helping those with co-occurring disorders.I am on the Spiritual and Faith Advisory board sponsored by DBHIDS.
Since living with this virus for as long as I have, I want to be able to help prevent the further spread of it by teaching prevention methods to those who are infected and affected by this virus.