About the International AIDS Candlelight Memorial

The International AIDS Candlelight Memorial is a time for all of us to remember the many lives lost to AIDS. It is an opportunity to honour those who dedicated their lives to helping people living with and affected by HIV and continue to mobilise our communities in solidarity. People living with HIV started the International AIDS Candlelight Memorial in 1983 and since then there have been thousands of events organised across the world by community-based organisations, from motorbike rallies by women living with HIV to uplifting ceremonies in places of worship and workplaces. Such events have helped raise awareness about HIV and more importantly have helped break down stigma within our communities.

The Quilt is a memorial to those who have died of HIV related illnesses

Messages of support and personal stories remembering those who have been lost and looking towards the future

2024 Memorials being held around New Zealand


Sunday 19th May 2024
6pm - St Matthews in the City

Cnr Hobson & Wellesley St


Sunday 19th May 2024
5pm - Tararua Tramping Club

4 Moncrieff Street, Mount Victoria, Wellington

If you would like to host an AIDS Candlelight Memorial in your region this year, please contact Body Positive for details and assistance.


Digitial Memorial

For those who do not live near or are unable to attend a local memorial this year, we are encouraging people to mark the annual AIDS Candlelight Memorial as an individual using available digital platforms.

Use #AIDScandlelightmemorial on your social posts to show your support for the Candlelight Memorial


Send a Personal Message

Send a personal message for this years International AIDS Candlelight Memorial, which will be displayed on this website, showing your support to the world - messages can either be displayed anonymously or named depending on your preference.

Alternatively, you can create a personal video message and upload it to our Dropbox if you would prefer:

Your Name *

Please enter your name as you would like it displayed alongside your message. You can choose not to display your name by selecting anonymous below.

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Your Personal Message *


New Zealand AIDS Candlelight Memorial Tribute

2023 marked the 40th anniversary of the first people in Aotearoa New Zealand to be identified as living with AIDS. In that same year (1983), the first AIDS Candlelight Memorials took place in San Francisco and New York City.

To mark these significant anniversaries, PrideNZ.com teamed up with filmmaker Peter Duncan to create an AIDS Candlelight Tribute featuring audio from previous Candlelight Memorial services combined with film footage shot in Wellington during 1993. This recording is dedicated to Cole Hampton, the host of Wellington's 2021 Candlelight Memorial who sadly passed away in 2022.