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Councilman Daniel Valenzuela Awards Inaugural Manuel Valenzuela ScholarshipCouncilman Daniel Valenzuela Awards Inaugural Manuel Valenzuela Scholarship<div class="ExternalClassB733EDE4F0E7457688D6C5F91784936B"><p style="text-align:center;">​<img src="/district5site/MediaAssets/Fast%20Track%20Cities%20Scholarship.jpg" alt="Councilman Valenzuela with finalists " style="margin:5px;width:350px;height:241px;" /><br></p><p>Councilman Daniel Valenzuela awarded the inaugural Manuel Valenzuela Scholarship to Nicole Hoyaanii Begay. The award was presented to Ms. Begay at the city of Phoenix Fast-Track Cities Ad Hoc Committee meeting last week.</p><p>The scholarship was awarded to a young adult who demonstrates leadership in fighting HIV/AIDS, as well as showing a commitment to social change. Ms. Begay's story of learning about her HIV diagnosis and confronting the challenges she faced on the road to recovery were compelling. She is now an advocate for early detection and speaks to young girls and teenagers across the state sharing her story and the lessons she continues to learn from it.</p><p>Three other finalists were also recognized: Elizabeth Chiffelle, Kevin Curwick, and Jaimi Romano.</p><p>The Scholarship is named after Manuel Valenzuela, the brother of Councilman Daniel Valenzuela. "In 1993, I lost my oldest brother and first role model, Manuel," said Councilman Valenzuela. "At the age of 28, he was diagnosed with an advanced stage of HIV/AIDS and passed away shortly after. Manuel continues to inspire those that knew him, which is why the Manuel Valenzuela Scholarship was created to recognize those who demonstrate an active commitment to ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic through leadership and social change in the city of Phoenix."</p><p>The city of Phoenix is one of 70 cities taking part in the Fast-Track Cities Initiative. Launched in 2014, the initiative aims to achieve the following targets: </p><ul><li>Zero stigma and discrimination</li><li>90% of the people living with HIV knowing their status</li><li>90% of people living with HIV positive status on antiretroviral therapy</li><li>90% of people on antiretroviral therapy achieving viral suppression</li></ul><p>The Manuel Valenzuela Scholarship is sponsored by Aunt Rita's Foundation, HEAL International, and the Phoenix Shanti Group. To learn more about what you can do in the battle against HIV/AIDS visit phoenix.gov/hivphx.</p><p>To learn more about Aunt Rita's Foundation, visit: <a href="http://www.auntritas.org/">http://www.auntritas.org/</a></p><p>To learn more about HEAL International, visit: <a href="http://www.healinternational.org/">http://www.healinternational.org/</a></p><p>To learn more about The Phoenix Shanti Group, visit: <a href="https://www.shantiaz.org/">https://www.shantiaz.org</a><br></p><p><br></p></div>2/27/2018 12:00:00 AMNick Valenzuela602-495-5405