Name: Dallas Metroplex Chapter of the NAMES Project Foundation
The NAMES Project is national organization for recognizing the lives lost and the families affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic through the creation and display of quilt panels, referred to as the AIDS Memorial Quilt. The organization was founded in 1987 by Cleve Jones who also created the Quilt’s first panel to honor the friends he lost to HIV/AIDS. During the first display of the Quilt, 1,920 panels were shown; panels created by friends and family not only to grieve their loved ones, but to place their loved one’s names that were either painted, stitched, or collaged onto the panels into the nation’s collective memory and into the memory of all who viewed the Quilt.
After the first display in 1987, the Quilt grew to over 8,000 panels in 1988, and then to 10,848 panels in 1989. The quilt continues to grow to this day, underlining the need to remember those who have lost their lives to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The NAMES Project and their mission – providing a constructive and creative outlet to grieve a loss from HIV/AIDS, exemplifying the immensity of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, as well as becoming a fundraising organization by encouraging the support of those afflicted with HIV/AIDS – established the charge for putting the statistics to a name. Soon after the founding of this national organization, regional and area chapters began to identify service areas and provide support to those affected by HIV/AIDS.
The Dallas Metroplex Chapter of the NAMES Project Foundation was chartered in September 1991. It was begun by a committed group of volunteers which later became the chapter’s steering committee. Along with its sister chapter in Fort Worth, the Dallas Metroplex chapter focused on addressing the needs of the service area; fundraising for support of HIV/AIDS educational outreach, holding panel making events, and adhering to the mission of the NAMES Project Foundation. The call for remembrance as well as awareness is stressed in the organization’s rallying cry: NO MORE NAMES!