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We had a halloween on the green event last Thursday in which the Alabama Alliance for Healthy Youth had a booth.  We did spooky crafts, a pumpkin bean bag toss, and handed out candy…. and condoms!  It was so funny to see everyone’s reactions when they saw the condom basket- at first they gave us weird stares and thought “Why in the world do they have that here?”  However, the more outgoing people who came to our table asked if they could have one or two.  The more shy girls and guys that came quietly slipped them into their brown paper bags or into their bras.  It was interesting to see the differences in reactions to how people responded to the fact that they could get free condoms.  In fact, a policeman came over to our table and asked who we were and what we were doing.  We responded with who the Alabama Alliance for Healthy Youth was, and that we hand out free condoms to anyone who wants them.  He then responded with, “Do you have any more condoms, because I am about to get you a whole bunch of people to come over here.”  He kept thanking us and saying how great it is that we were handing out condoms.  I want everyone on campus to know that getting condoms is not expensive or difficult here at UAB.  All they have to do is ask one of us in the alliance leadership council, or show up to a school-wide event.  Its that easy to stay safe.  However, as the Alabama Alliance for Healthy Youth, we need to make sure that everyone knows who we are and what we can offer.  One of the ways that we do this is by asking people to join the Alliance so that they can get email updates on what we are doing.  We still have a long journey ahead of us, but by every new card that we fill out and every event that we attend, we are, though perhaps in a small way,  slowing down rates of STDs and teen pregnancies in Alabama- and that is an encouraging thought.