Canberra, ACT
National Arboretum, Forrest Drive Canberra AIDS Garden of Reflection since 2 April 2017
without names
Campaign launched to fund AIDS Garden of Reflection
After years of planning and campaigning the AIDS Garden of Reflection will be constructed in a freshly allotted development in the National Arboretum.
AIDS Action Council executive director Philippa Moss said the garden was designed as a peaceful place of contemplation to serve as a memorial for families, friends and supporters. "The vision for the garden is to create a secluded area for reflection which provides a sense of comfort and sanctuary," she said. "A special haven where visitors can remember and honour those lost to AIDS, reflect on their own lives and contribute to their understanding of HIV and AIDS." Ms Moss said it was vital the nation's capital has an AIDS memorial site, and a community group of people living with HIV, their family and friends have spent nearly seven years raising funds and searching for a suitable location.
The AIDS Action Council enlisted the help of businessman and philanthropist John Mackay to serve as its patron. And Mr Mackay has been pivotal in funding and raising money to secure the garden's location. He said the group had consulted regularly with architects to ensure the appropriate atmosphere was designed to honour the community. "You don't want people walking through there and bursting in to tears," he said. "It will be a place where anybody who walks through, even if you know nothing about AIDS, would say 'wow this is a beautiful garden'. Mr Mackay lost his brothers, Stephen and David, to AIDS in the early nineties and said his personal investment to the council and the construction of the memorial is a "labour of love".
Photo (c) Jamila Toderas The Canberra Times

7 May 2016
James Hall, Canberra