Established in 1987, The NAMES Project Foundation is the international NGO (non-governmental organization) that is the custodian of The AIDS Memorial Quilt, an official American treasure.
The mission of The NAMES Project Foundation is to preserve, care for and use The AIDS Memorial Quilt to foster healing, heighten awareness, and inspire action in the age of AIDS. Specifically, The NAMES Project works to display The Quilt in nearly 1,000 venues each year, to conserve and care for the aging 54-ton tapestry and it’s half a million piece archive, and to encourage and support the creation of new Quilt panels for this ever-evolving handmade memorial.
Weighing 54 tons and composed of more than 48,000 panels dedicated to more than 94,000 individuals, The AIDS Memorial Quilt is the premier symbol of the AIDS pandemic, our greatest HIV prevention education tool and the largest ongoing piece of community folk art in the world.
Throughout its 25 year history, The Quilt has been used to fight prejudice, raise awareness and funding, as a means to link hands with the global community in the fight against AIDS. Whether The Quilt is displayed as a single section in an elementary school or 1,000 of blocks on the national mall in Washington, it provides balm for the painful wounds of grief, pours oil into the waters made turbulent by controversy, opens eyes that refuse to see and enlists every person who experiences it to play a role in stopping the pandemic.