Panelmaking and Living Quilt Programs
(revised as of March 2005)

International AIDS Prevention Initiative (“IAPI”) provides information on creating a panel for The AIDS Memorial Quilt in twelve languages, and information on submitting a new panel to an International Quilt affiliate in Africa, Asia/Pacific Rim, Canada, the Caribbean, Europe, South America, or to The NAMES Project Foundation (American quilt).  To date, the NAMES Project-USA (as of December 2004), has received over 44,000 panels.   IAPI also provide information hosting a panelmaking workshop at a school, business, or organization.


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• How to Make a Panel

Below are instructions on “How To Make A Panel” in thirteen languages, including English. Some of these instructions require the free Acrobat Reader plugin, available here.

Cambodian Instruction
Chinese Instructions
Dutch Instructions
English Instructions
German/Deutsch Instructions
Spanish/Espanol Instructions
French/Francais Instructions
Italian/Italiano Instructions
Korean Instructions
Russian Instructions
Philippine/Tagalog Instructions
Vietnamese Instructions
South African/Xhosa Instructions

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Making a Panel for the International AIDS Memorial Quilt

Making a commemorative Quilt panel for someone who has died from AIDS has proven to be a powerful tool in engaging people to talk about the disease.  Many people have learned about the International AIDS Memorial Quilt through the media, television or the internet; or through their school, church, organization, or business and want to get involved.
International AIDS Prevention Initiative ("IAPI") has worked with the AIDS Memorial Quilt since 1987, and knows the educational possibilities a panelmaking workshop can provide. IAPI offers assistance to organizations in any country in organizing their first panelmaking workshop. Through its "Threads of Hope" Program, IAPI can provide quilting/sewing supplies from US-based organizations including fabric, notions, and other supplies for the creation of memorial panels.
IAPI expanded its educational efforts in 1999 to include the western cape of South Africa, Harare, Zimbabwe, and countries in the Caribbean. IAPI can create workshops for any type of organization in your city, province, or country, and suggest ways to display completed sections as an HIV/AIDS awareness, education, and prevention tool.
The making of a panel can be an important part of the healing process after losing someone to AIDS. Panelmakers can choose to include the name of a person they have lost to AIDS, or if confidentiality is an issue, the person's nickname; a generic term such as "to my sister", "to my teacher", or "for all the children" have also been used. The design of the panel includes sharing details about the person's life so others can learn about them: favorite color, food, city, occupation, family members, religion, likes/dislikes, birth-date, death date, etc. Panels can also include pictures, pieces of clothing, or other personal items
IAPI suggests that workshops be offered on a regular basis (monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly). The ideal workshop should last between approximately 2 to 4 hours, so potential panelmakers can receive information, learn what the Quilt is about, and eventually allow them to feel comfortable to make a panel.  Each workshop’s goal should be to create a "safe environment" for participants, and ensure that their anonymity is not compromised.
Through IAPI’s program, and in association with Global Quilt, a charitable organization based in Amsterdam, completed panels can also be viewed by others around the world increase greater HIV/AIDS awareness. International and local displays have become an effective educational and prevention tool, particularly in schools and places of worship. IAPI encourages US-based organizations to sister (mentor) with churches, schools, and organizations in other countries through panelmaking workshops; to share information about education, prevention programs, AIDS ministries, peer education models, and much more.
IAPI is eager to share this powerful tool to help with your HIV/AIDS efforts. IAPI volunteers travel throughout the year and can schedule to meet with any organization to introduce IAPI's panelmaking program, as well as other curriculum-based programs for schools, technical assistance, and sistering programs with other countries organizations. Further information can be found on IAPI website listed below. We invite you to consider using the International AIDS Memorial Quilt in your HIV/AIDS efforts.
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Other Panelmaking Programs

• Living Quilt

Today, the face of HIV/AIDS looks different than it did in the beginning of the pandemic.  More and more people are living with the disease from all walks of life. International AIDS Prevention Initiative ("IAPI") was inspired to create its Living Quilt Program from an activity created by The Leake & Watt's Children's Center in Yonkers (New York).  One of their support groups for People With HIV/AIDS ("PWA") created "Living" sections by designing small panels incorporating their own faces as an expression how they see themselves living with the disease. IAPI adapted this idea and now suggests creating both “Living” and “Commemorative” sections for organizations seeking an interactive project for its clients.  These “living” panels remain the position of the host organization.
For complete Living Quilt Program details, click here.

• Anna's Workshop

Anna’s Workshop was created by AIDS Quilt Rhode Island (formerly NAMES Project Rhode Island) to assist particularly students and youth groups to learn more about HIV/AIDS through the process of making a panel.  However, some students do not know someone who has died or are shy about disclosing a person’s name, so the workshop developed a “In Memoriam” form as a way to assist collecting information about someone who has died, and created a format for the creation of making a panel.
For complete details about workshop and IAPI’s "In Memoriam" Profile Form, click here

• Panelmaking Workshop

IAPI offers assistance in establishing a panelmaking workshop so individuals have the opportunity to create a panel honoring someone they have lost to the disease. Each organization, businesses, place of worship, or school is responsible to provide sewing supplies, fabric, paints, markers, etc. so that participants can create panels.  Each organization is also responsible to arrange workshop schedules.  Upon completion, IAPI can provide assistance in planning a Panel Dedication Ceremony (see below), prior to submitting the panel(s) to The NAMES Project for inclusion with the American Quilt.
Panelmakers wishing to turn in panels to a International Quilt organization in Africa, Asia/Pacific Rim, the Caribbean, Canada, Europe, and South America can contact IAPI for existing projects.
Below is a list of organizations have in the past or are currently holding panelmaking workshops.  Some workshops are only open in preparation of World AIDS Day (approx. October to December 1).  Please note that some workshops create panels for the (American) AIDS Memorial Quilt and will be submitted to The NAMES Project, while others follow a Living Quilt Program which is not affiliated with The NAMES Project Foundation.
Montefoire Medical Center, Bronx, NY
Contact: Hector Torres
Minority Health Care Communications (at its HIV/AIDS related conferences)
Contact: Mary Hess
International AIDS Prevention Initiative (at various sites in New York area and outside the United States)

• Panel Dedications and What To Do

What To Do When You're Done With Your Panel?

1. Make sure all parts of the design - cloth pieces, notion attachments, etc., are sewn on to the background panel as best you can.  Panels will last longer if they are sewn securely.
2. Fill out a Primary Panelmaker Information Card (available through The NAMES Project's website) so the appropriate information can be added to the panelmaking database maintained at The NAMES Project's national office.
3. Optionally material(s) to include:
    • a picture of the person who is memorialized,
    • a note about the person or personal thoughts why the panel, and
    • any donation you wish to include.
All information is kept in the archives at The NAMES Project Foundation.
Once the above steps are completed, send the panel to, panels intended to be apart of the (American) AIDS Memorial Quilt should be sent to:

The NAMES Project
101 Krog St.
Atlanta, GA 30307
Phone: (404) 688-5500
Fax: (404) 522-1673

Panels made for The Living Quilt Program remains with the organization that make them.  If the organization is apart of a larger organization (HIV CARE Network, chapters, affiliates, etc.), we suggest these panels can be used in daily awareness campaigns in the lobbies, offices, and displayed at conferences of the organization

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• Local Panel Dedication Ceremonies

IAPI does not accepts new panels being submitted to the (American) NAMES Project - AIDS Memorial Quilt.  IAPI does, however, encourage schools, churches, or any other organization who completes a panel to create a dedication ceremony at your school, office, or headquarters. These dedication ceremonies should be short and simple, and give panelmakers a sense of closure.  These dedication ceremonies can be used regardless whether a panel is being submitted to The NAMES Project, the Living Quilt Program, or to an International Quilt organization around the world
Many schools and churches have found it a power prevention tool to display completed panels in their lobby or high-traffic areas.  A daily visual reminder for students, clients, and staff can serve as a great educational reminder while continuing to honor the person on the panel. Once it has been up for awhile, we encourage you to turn the panel in directly to The NAMES Project, if it is to be included in the (American) AIDS Memorial Quilt, or contact IAPI for organizations around the world.