CBS News Channel 5 Nashville (WTVF-TV)
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Nashville Native Honored For Her Cause
May 11, 2009 07:58 PM
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A Nashville native's life changed completely when she was 19-years-old after discovering she was HIV positive.
Marvelyn Brown has traveled the world spreading her message about AIDS.
"It just never was something that I felt would affect me or anyone I knew for that matter," said Brown.
She never thought the decision to not use a condom one day would change her life forever.
"For so long, I had seen the statistics but I didn't know anyone," said Brown.
Brown contracted HIV six years ago, and since then she made AIDS education and awareness her mission.
She spoke to groups around the world, urging them to get tested and has even written an autobiography she describes as a cautionary tale.
"I make HIV real to them. When I started doing this, this was all I really wanted to do was to make it real because if someone made it real to me I don't believe that I would be infected," said Brown.
She's even gotten noticed from Dosomething.org, the largest national organization devoted to social change among youth.
The group called Brown on Monday and the speaker was at a loss for words.
Brown was one of five young people to win an award from Dosomething.org. She will get $10,000 towards her cause and the chance to win $100,000.
Brown said the award was just what she needed to make her mission even stronger.
"It feels so good every time you have that reassurance that work you're doing is just great and helping people, it feels so good," said Brown.
Marveyln Brown will travel to New York City next month for the red carpet awards event.