131933 Nelson Vergel By Lynn Lane.jpeg D5cbd7f6 1787 4a59 8d19 Bc71ee516046

Reunion Project Town Hall to feature HIV fitness legend Nelson Vergel

We are probably far enough along in the history of HIV/AIDS to mark several figures as, well, historical. Fitness expert Nelson Vergel qualifies for that category, having taken the lead in educating people living with HIV about fitness and nutrition from the earliest years of the epidemic.

Lucky for us, the long-term survivor is still very active in the HIV arena, and The Reunion Project will feature him in their upcoming virtual Town Hall event, “Moving Forward: Stories of Resilience,” this Tuesday, December 6 from 2:00 – 5 p.m. ET. You can register for the free event here.

Nelson has been a personal hero of mine for decades now. His groundbreaking book, Built to Survive, written with Michael Mooney, has become an instant reference guide for people living with HIV who want to stay healthy and arm their bodies against the potential ravages of HIV disease. Nelson’s own commitment to fitness – his bulging biceps have become as much a part of his brand as his clairvoyant nutritional wisdom – has influenced and inspired generations of people living with HIV.

Nelson is also a generous, constant resource for people living with HIV, having established online communities to discuss HIV issues and even guesting on my own video blogs on several occasions. Anyway, treat yourself to the sight of Nelson raiding my fridge in a 2011 video to declare the items healthy or not. His advice is insightful and hilarious.

As if Nelson Vergel wasn’t enough, The Reunion Project event includes another HIV community stalwart, Mark Misrock of the National Working Positive Coalition, who will lead a discussion on employment and employment services as key factors in long-term health equity and quality of life HIV survivors. I will be on hand to moderate and record all the great information and tips.

“The National Virtual Town Hall is an online, mini version of our 2-day in-person summits that we host around the country,” says Executive Director Jeff Berry. “These 3-hour webinars allow long-term survivors who would otherwise be unable to attend a chance to connect and share with others in a virtual gathering.”

Founded in 2015 by activists living with HIV, The Reunion Project (TRP) is the national alliance of long-term survivors of HIV, working with local and national HIV advocates, providers and researchers. Together, the Reunion Project invests and connects individuals and communities, shares experiences of survival and loss while honoring the past, and develops successful strategies for living and supporting each other, today and in the future.

To register, visit bit.ly/MovingForward5

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