Remembering Hydeia Broadbent, One of the World’s Youngest HIV Activists


February 22, 2024

She was one of the world’s youngest HIV activists and the first Black youth to speak publicly about the epidemic.

The world mourns the loss of Hydeia Broadbent, an advocate and voice for HIV/AIDS awareness, who passed away on February 20, 2024, her father announced. From a very young age, Broadbent’s life was marked by unwavering dedication to breaking stigma, spreading education, and inspiring change.

Born with HIV in 1984, Hydeia Broadbent faced the harsh reality of the virus from infancy. Her story gained national attention when, at the tender age of six, she appeared on Hour Magazine with Gary Collins. This early exposure marked the beginning of Broadbent’s commitment to raising awareness about HIV/AIDS, breaking barriers in discussing the virus openly.


In an unprecedented series of events, Broadbent went on a national speaking tour at the age of seven, challenging misconceptions and dispelling myths surrounding HIV/AIDS. Her courage and poise on platforms like The Oprah Winfrey Show and Nickelodeon set a precedent for advocacy, proving that age is no barrier to making a significant impact in public health conversations.

In her teenage years, Hydeia Broadbent became a powerful voice on international platforms, following in the footsteps of Ryan White. She passionately spoke about living with the virus and became one of the few young activists to address the global community on the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Ebony Magazine recognized her influence, naming her one of the Most Influential 150 African Americans in both 2008 and 2011.

Hydeia Broadbent’s dedication to advocacy persisted into adulthood. Through speaking engagements, media appearances, community work with her Sigma Gamma Rho sorority sisters, and her active presence on social media, she continued to champion the cause, providing support and education. Broadbent’s legacy is evident in the countless lives she touched, the perspectives she changed, and the progress she catalyzed in the fight against HIV/AIDS.


As we bid farewell to this trailblazer, let us honor Hydeia Broadbent’s memory by carrying forward the torch of awareness, compassion, and activism.

Cover photo: Hydeia Broadbent was the first Black youth to speak publicly about the HIV/AIDS epidemic / Credit: HydeiaBroadbent.com


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