“Renaissance UK Welcomes Dan Westwood as Patron of the charity.”

Renaissance – UK is a Blackpool based charity, providing support to Multi Disadvantaged adults. The charity has a range of Substance use and Sexual Health services and is a leader in providing HIV Prevention and Support services throughout Lancashire. 

The announcement of the Actor, TV Presenter and Radio Broadcaster’s involvement with the charity comes at the start of its 36th year and on a very special day for the service, ‘World Aids Day 2021’. 

Dan Westwood, who is a passionate advocate for the LGBTQ+ community and those living with and affected by HIV said: 

“I’m delighted to mark ‘World Aids Day 2021’ by teaming up with Ren-UK to become the first charity patron and to work with and support all the brilliant work they do. As a proud Member of the LGBTQ+ community, I not only have a huge Interest, but also passion and more importantly experience with Mental Health myself. Alongside this I want to help others around me and friends living with HIV. I am keen to learn and educate anyone who needs support working in partnership with this fantastic Charity. Together we can move forward not only people’s current situations but, in some cases, change their lives.”

Shelley Mullarkey, Ren-UK Chief Operating Director said: 

“We are delighted to welcome Dan as our first ever Charity Patron, we have followed Dan’s career and his recent #Here4U Mental Health campaign and feel he is a great ambassador for the organisation. He understands the needs of our beneficiaries and is in a key position to help raise awareness of the issues affecting young men. Dan came to visit us recently; he is passionate about helping others and has a real desire to learn about everything we do and help us in any way he can. We are really looking forward to welcoming Dan into the charity and working more closely with him on some exciting plans for the future!” 

Dan joins Renaissance UK on World AID Day 2021.

Taking place on the1 December each year. World AIDS Day is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, to show support for people living with HIV, and to commemorate those who have died from an AIDS-related illness. Founded in 1988, World AIDS Day was the first ever global health day.

Currently over 105,200 people are living with HIV here in the UK. Globally, there are an estimated 38 million people who have the virus. Despite the virus only being identified in 1984, more than 35 million people have died of HIV or AIDS related illnesses, making it one of the most destructive pandemics in history.

Today, scientific advances have been made in HIV treatment, there are laws to protect people living with HIV and we understand so much more about the condition. Despite this, each year in the UK over 4,139 people are diagnosed with HIV, people do not know the facts about how to protect themselves and others, and stigma and discrimination remain a reality for many people living with the condition.

The UK government has a target, to eliminate new HIV infections by 2030. But we can only do this by working hard to educate people, encourage more testing, condom use, treatment as protection, (also known as U=U), and the use of PrEP. You can find out more about HIV, how to protect yourself and where and when to get tested by visiting https://www.startswithme.org.uk/

What can you do to help?

Join Renaissance UK staff, volunteers and service users, by wearing something RED and posting your pictures, or TikTok videos to your preferred social media!

Tag us at @RenaissanceDLL in your posts so we can follow along and use the hashtags #RenUKWAD and #RockTheRibbon

You can keep in touch with Dan’s journey as a patron for Renaissance UK by following @RenaissanceDLL on all social media, or @westwooddan on Instagram and Twitter.