American AIDS Activist Names Trans-Atlantic Rowboat In Equitorial Guinea Next Week
Victor Mooney of Forest Hills, New York will announce the name of his new ocean rowboat in the capital of Equatorial Guinea, Africa’s sole former Spanish colony, next week. Mr. Mooney’s announcement is designed to coincide with the Ninth Leon H. Sullivan Summit, which is scheduled from August 20 – 24.
“Remarkably, President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo has kept a light on the fight against AIDS with an array of public outreach efforts to improve public awareness of discrimination against those with HIV/AIDS and prevention initiatives”, said Victor Mooney.
The late Reverend Leon H. Sullivan is often remembered from the Third African-African American Summit (now the Leon H. Sullivan Summits) in Dakar, Senegal when he proclaimed – We will never be separated again.
“For me, the experience of training, crying and sleeping in the Slave House on Goree Island, Senegal has left an indelible mark on my life”, Mooney added.
Later this year, Mr. Mooney will make his fourth bid to row across the Atlantic Ocean. He plans to depart from Canary Islands, a Spanish archipelago located just off the northwest coast of mainland Africa and row five-thousand miles to New York City. Mooney’s twenty-four foot custom made rowboat was built in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Mr. Mooney has lost one brother to AIDS and has another battling the disease. It’s his continued hope that this mission will encourage voluntary HIV testing, increase awareness and AIDS prevention.
The BVI native, a devout Catholic, was blessed by Pope John Paul II for his mission at the Vatican in 2004 on World AIDS Day. He looks to attend Mass at Cathedral Malabo, distribute rosaries that were collected from Dioceses and Parishes across the United States, invite locals and summit participants to score a goal for an AIDS-free generation during his trip.