5 Ways To Take Action + Celebrate World AIDS Day

Photo: (MTV)

This Saturday, December 1, is World AIDS Day, but we’re not here to preach, or lecture, or cover you in red ribbons. Okay, maybe just a little. But mostly, we’ve got 5 easy ways to play it safe and celebrate! From a backpack full of condoms to a free trip to the MTV Video Music Awards, here are a few great ways to celebrate World AIDS Day.

+ Use Protection

What’s more important than wearing red tomorrow is wearing protection tomorrow night. And every night! Condoms are the only method that protect against HIV, STDs, and pregnancy. A pack of condoms can cost more than my favorite sushi roll. BUT some places do offer them for free! Head over to your local Planned Parenthood, for example, where they will literally give you a backpack full of rubbers if you ask. Don’t ask me how I know that.

+ Get Tested

According to the Center For Disease Control (CDC), more than half of young Americans with HIV don’t know they have it. As it takes a while for the symptoms of the virus to show, the only way to know your status for sure is to get tested. It’s quick, painless (if you’re afraid of needles, your doctor can test your spit!), free of charge, and judgment-free. If you think you feel the nurse’s eyes judging you, it’s probably just you judging yourself for that sloppy Saturday night hookup. Sh*t happens…just make sure it happens with a condom on!

+ Get Educated

The only way to prevent HIV is to know how and how not to get it. There are tons of misconceptions about safe sex, like that two condoms are better than one, or that you can’t get STDs if you only sleep with members of the chess club or that innocent chick from Bible study. Learn more about HIV — the facts, the myths, and how to best protect yourself — with MTV’s It’s Your (Sex) Life.

+ Educate Others

You’re reading this, but not everybody is as awesome as you are! Now that you know how to protect yourself, share your knowledge with your family, friends, significant others, and 2 a.m. booty calls. You can also spread the world by Tweeting #positivetalk all day.

+ Watch MTV’s “I’m Positive” at 7/6c

MTV’s “I’m Positive” is a special centered around Otis, Kelly, and Stephanie — 3 inspiring, young Americans living with HIV. According to the Center For Disease Control, youth aged 13-24 account for up to 30% of new HIV infections.  Watch “I’m Positive” on MTV — December 1 at 7/6c. Remind friends to tune in on Twitter for your chance to win a trip to the 2013 MTV VMAs! Get details on the contest.

And remember: Today may be World AIDS Day, but it’s important to protect yourself and others every day! Now go enjoy your damn weekend…safely!

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Enter to win VMA tix

Enter to win VMA tix

Take action to go to the @MTV Tweet you need to RT! By following MTV and Retweeting, you enter to win the VMA trip!

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Get the 411 on HIV/AIDS

Get the 411 on HIV/AIDS

Learn more about HIV/AIDS, who's at risk, how to protect yourself, and more at It's Your (Sex) Life.