What is the AIDS Memorial Quilt?

In June 1987, a group of strangers gathered to remember the names and lives of their loved ones they feared history would forget. It was this group that first set the sewing machines at The NAMES Project Foundation in motion in a small storefront in San Francisco’s Castro neighborhood. Those first few memorials – sewn 25 years ago, were voices crying out the suffering of one community. Over the years those voices have swelled to tens of thousands calling for compassion, awareness and action in the age of AIDS on behalf of people from all walks of life, all around the globe.

Throughout its history, The AIDS Memorial Quilt has been used to fight prejudice, raise awareness and funding, as a means to link hands with the global community in the struggle against AIDS, and as an effective tool in HIV and AIDS education and prevention.

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What are the two events happening this summer where The Quilt will be on display?

The 2012 Smithsonian Folklife Festival:
The Smithsonian Institution has invited The AIDS Memorial Quilt to be one of the three major programs presented on the National Mall in Washington D.C., July 27- July 1, and July 4 – 8, 2012.

The XIX International AIDS Conference:
As the global scientific HIV and AIDS community gathers for the International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2012) The Quilt will blanket Washington D.C. From July 21st to July 24th, Quilt will fill the available sections of the National Mall (from 8th to 14th streets) and be on display in over 40 locations throughout the metropolitan D.C. area.

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Where can I see The Quilt?

Check out all of the events and locations in D.C. this summer.

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Where can I stay in Washington D.C.?

KIMPTON Hotels & Restaurants foster a culture that celebrates the individuality of its guests and employees alike. It is just one of the many reasons that The AIDS Memorial Quilt is proud of its partnership with KIMPTON and this summer, thanks to generous support from KIMPTON, visitors coming to Washington, D.C. to see The Quilt can get discounted rates at local KIMPTON hotels.


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I want to donate to The Quilt. What does my money help to pay for?

Each year The NAMES Project unfolds sections of The Quilt at thousands of places: in high school gymnasiums, community centers, places of worship, art galleries, museums, corporate headquarters, government offices, as well as on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Wherever it is displayed, The Quilt provides balm for the painful wounds of grief, pours oil into the waters made turbulent by controversy, opens eyes that refuse to see and enlists every person who experiences it to play a role in stopping the pandemic. It is difficult to walk away from The Quilt unchanged.

The NAMES Project Foundation’s core activities include:

Quilt Display Programs are the backbone of The Quilt’s work. The Quilt is used as a companion to HIV/AIDS education programs in a wide variety of community forums. Specific initiatives include: The National Middle and High School Program, The Historically Black Colleges and Universities Tour, The College and Universities Display Program, The National Chapter and International Affiliates Program, and the Communities of Faith Display program.

Did You Know….
It costs, on average $60.00– one-way – to send a box of 3 sections of The Quilt to a display.

Panel Making: The NAMES Project continues to receive new panels on a daily basis. Current initiatives include National Workshop Affiliates and Chapter Program, “Call My Name” African American Workshop Program, and the traditional weekly workshop at the headquarters location in Atlanta.

Did You Know….
It costs $250, on average, to incorporate a single panel into The AIDS Memorial Quilt

Conservation and Care of The AIDS Memorial Quilt (and its associated archive) By Preserving and caring for The Quilt, The NAMES Project continues to make the historical and contemporary educational lessons of The Quilt available to people from all walks of life.

Did You Know….
Each panel of Quilt receives $25 worth of conservation and repair annually.

The 25th Anniversary Programs

Throughout The Summer of 2012 – and beyond – The Quilt will do what it does best: affirm our humanity, make clear our connections to and responsibility for one another, and garner a new era of support and advocacy for the AIDS cause.

Did You Know….
It will cost $75 per panel to produce the Quilt in the Capital programs this summer