Josh Hutcherson has opened up about his heartbreak at having two uncles die from AIDS.

The 19-year-old 'Hunger Games' star - who is a staunch campaigner for gay rights - reveals how he never got to meet his homosexual relatives, who were struck down with the disease at the height of the epidemic.

He said: ''They were in their early 30s, in great shape, but unfortunately they were taken away from us too soon. Both passed away at about the time I was born.''

Josh is set to become the youngest recipient of the Vanguard Award at the GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles on Saturday (21.04.12), following in the footsteps of Hollywood heavyweights including Elizabeth Taylor, Charlize Theron and Janet Jackson, and considers his charity work to be his biggest achievement.

He told E! News: ''My mom has always been a big advocate, especially in the gay, lesbian, transsexual and bisexual community so for me it's always been a part of my soul.

''This is what my family is most proud of and the same for me.

''Acting is one thing, but actually trying to change the world and the way people think to make people's lives better? That's the stuff I'm most proud of.''

And although he doesn't believe in heaven, he hopes his uncles will be proud.

He added: ''I'm not a religious person in that sense. But at the same time I do believe in some sort of something, just not sure exactly. But yeah, I'd like to think that they see what I'm doing and that they're proud of me.''