Huffpost San Francisco

San Francisco AIDS Walk 2012 Raises Almost $3 Million (PHOTOS)

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A crowd of 20,000 strong gathered in Golden Gate Park Sunday to help the fight against AIDS/HIV in San Francisco.

The San Francisco Aids Walk celebrated 26 years on June 15, with one of the largest crowds yet for the 10k walk.

(SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOS)

The San Francisco AIDS Foundation raised a whopping $2,686,582 through the event, allowing them to continue to lead the way with life-saving prevention programs and bold public policy initiatives.

“Our participants show such dedication year after year because they know that ending AIDS is about fighting more than the virus itself. It is also about overcoming poverty, racism, sexism, and homophobia. These social ills continue to fuel the epidemic" Craig. R. Miller, founder and producer of the event, said in a statement.

Currently, 1.2 million people are living with HIV/AIDS in the United States, more than at any other time in history. In San Francisco, more than 15,500 suffer from the disease. Alarmingly, rates of new HIV infections are still rising among gay and bisexual men, the only risk group for which this is the case.

But there may still be hope yet. "This is the beginning of the end of the AIDS epidemic," Dr. Diane Havlir, UCSF HIV/AIDS division chair, told The Huffington Post last week. Havlir explained that enormous strives have been made in the research and medical fields towards the future prevention of HIV and AIDS in recent years.

And every little bit from San Francisco helps.

"AIDS Walk San Francisco embodies the true spirit of our city with thousands of people from all walks of life coming together for a singular purpose: to make a real difference in the fight against HIV/AIDS,” said Mayor Ed Lee.

Did you walk this year or in years past? Add your own photos to the slideshow below.

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