Global Quilt provides information to anyone on how to create an AIDS Memorial Quilt panel.  List below are instructions in many languages, how to submit a completed panel to an International Quilt organization in Africa, Asia/Pacific Rim, Canada, the Caribbean, Europe, South American, and to the NAMES Project Foundation (in the USA).  Global Quilt also has available other Quilt-related programs to assist in types of workshops, dedicating completed panels, and care and inventory ideas.

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• How To Make A Panel
• Why Make An AIDS Quilt
• How To Sew Together Quilt Panels (under construction)
• Inventory Guidelines and Care for Quilts (under construction)
• Other Panelmaking Programs
    • Living Quilt
    • Anna’s Workshop
    • Panelmaking workshops
    • Panel Dedication
    • Turning In A Completed Quilt panel


How To Make A Panel
Below are instructions on How To Make A Panel for the International AIDS Memorial Quilt in many languages.  Some of these instructions require using Acrobat Reader

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Why Make An AIDS Quilt
The AIDS Memorial Quilt was first started in 1987 to remember and honor those lost to AIDS.  The founder of the organization, Cleve Jones, had lost his best friend to AIDS, and didn’t want his name to be forgotten.  Quilts are made by individuals or families in the privacy of their own homes, or organizations form panelmaking workshops (quilting bees) and meet in churches, schools, or community centers.  Workshops provide a safe place for people to come together and share stories, and can also provide further education about the disease, deal with stigma and discrimination, and care and support for participants.  Panels made using a person’s full name, nickname or initials to keep their anonymity, is an empowering process that can help someone to disclose their own status, or finally acknowledge someone close to them who died from AIDS.

Regardless of where or how a panel is made, the making of a panel has proven to be a powerful tool in engaging people to talk about the disease, especially in countries and cultures that it is “taboo” to talk about.  It can also significantly assists in the healing process after losing someone to AIDS.
Panels have traditionally been made to tell a visual story about the person lost to AIDS, so items from the individual can be used on the panel such as their t-shirts, pins, hats, etc.  Pictures or other momentum can be used to honor the individual on the panel.  Completed panels are sew together by each country, and displayed upon request to help with HIV/AIDS awareness, education, and prevention efforts in schools, churches, businesses, or governmental institutions around the world.

How To Sew together Quilt Panels
 (under construction)

Inventory Guidelines and Care for Quilts
 (under construction)

Other Panelmaking Programs
These are programs created to assist in the making of Quilt panels, and new programs designed for People Living with HIV/AIDS (“PWAs”).

Living Quilt Program

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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 our Living Quilt Program from an activity created by The Leake & Watt's Children's Center in Yonkers, NY.  One of their support groups for People With HIV/AIDS ("PWA") created "Living" sections by decorating faces of themselves to express how they see themselves living with the disease.  IAPI liked the concept and decided to incorporate "Living" sections with our "Commemorative" sections. 
The program has two types of Quilts: "Living" sections comprised of faces made by PWAs to reflect themselves and their personalities, and "Commemorative" sections that anyone can make to remember someone they have lost to AIDS.  Both Living and Commemorative are 12" or 18" squares, and are sewn together to show that we remember both equally.  Sections become the ownership of those creating them, and does not become apart of the AIDS Memorial Quilt.
We offer HIV/AIDS Conferences, agencies, support groups, etc. to create their own Living Quilt, and display them where everyone can see them.  By displaying them in their own lobbies, offices, classrooms for everyone to see, they can serve as daily HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention tool.  Participants can decide whether to have your sections grow by adding squares, or create new sections as deemed appropriate for your organization.
Instructions for make a "Living Quilt" section:
Those wishing to begin a Living Quilt need to determine the size in which you'd like to make.  They can be 12" or 18" squares, but should be the same size for consistency.  The PWA "Living" sections are faces that are cut out of felt (the color depicting the ethnicity of the individual), and decorated to reflect their personalities and how they picture themselves. The faces are then attached to a 12" or 18" square.  The "Commemorative" Quilt include a person's name who has died from AIDS, and add anything else to reflects your memory of them.  Should a PWA who has created a "Living" Quilt pass away, we encourage an organization to create something like an angel, star, or cloud noting their passing.  This allows Living Quilts to truly reflect the face of HIV/AIDS.
When Your Section is Complete:
Living Quilt are not intended to be included with the NAMES Project Foundation.  They become the property of the agency, conference, or organization who created them.  Some choose to share their sections with others, or use them for their own outreach and awareness campaigns. 
Additional details are available on our website under the panelmaking icon. 
If you wish to make a panel to be included in the AIDS Memorial Quilt, these directions and information can be found in our panelmaking section on this
page, or with The NAMES Project Foundation.
For further questions contact us at:

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

Panelmaking workshops
Global Quilt offers assistance in establishing a panelmaking workshop for individuals to have the opportunity to create an AIDS Quilt panel to honor someone they have lost to AIDS.  Individuals or organizations wishing to facilitate and run a workshop takes on the responsibility of providing a venue, and sewing supplies, fabric, paints, markers, etc., to make panels.
Global Quilt suggests that workshops be offered on a regular basis (monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly, etc.), and that the schedule created be printed in church bulletins, organizational newsletter, or in the local newspaper.  The ideal workshop should last between 2 to 4 hours, so potential panelmakers can receive information, learn what the Quilt is about, and assistance in making a panel. Each workshop’s goal should be to create a “safe environment” for participants, and ensure their anonymity is not comprised.

Panel Dedication
Once a panel or more are completed, Global Quilt and it’s partners have found that creating small “panel dedication” ceremony is an important way for panelmakers to have a sense of closure.  Dedicating and displaying new panels can move others to feel comfortable to talk about how HIV/AIDS has affected their lives or people they know.  The ceremony can be included in an existing support group meeting, church service, or student assembly, and it is appropriate to allow panelmakers to provide a short message on why they made a panel and something about the person they honored.

Turning In A Completed Quilt panel
Panelmakers wishing to turn in their panels, Global Quilt can assist you in determining if there is a Quilt organization in your country/city, or give you options.  Global Quilt has listed below countries in which there is a current Quilt organization that you can contact to turn in your Quilt.


Kenya, South Africa, Zimbabwe

Asia/Pacific Rim: 

Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Taiwan, Thailand, Philippines


Cuba, Haiti, Jamaica, Trinidad/Tobago




Belgium, France, Germany, Israel, the Netherlands, Russia, Spain, United Kingdom

South America:

Argentina, Chile, Guatemala, Venezuela

North America:

The NAMES Project Foundation

Click here to inquire how to reach one of these Quilt organizations.