Cleveland Mayor Frank G. Jackson and other elected officials will preside over a twilight candlelight vigil and building dedication ceremony of the Taskforce’s new all-in-one AIDS services facility in Cleveland on Monday, December 2nd; site to house an AHF Healthcare Center, AHF Pharmacy, HIV testing & prevention services, food pantry, research division and serve as the Taskforce’s headquarters.
CLEVELAND (November 29, 2013) In conjunction with the 25th observation of World AIDS Day this weekend (observed each year on December 1st), AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland (ATGC) and AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), two respected organizations that combined forces in a new partnership to improve delivery of lifesaving HIV/AIDS care and services in Ohio earlier this year, are hosting a candlelight vigil and building dedication ceremony of its new all-in-one AIDS services facility in Cleveland. The candlelight vigil and dedication is set for Monday, December 2nd starting at 5:00pm with formal speaking program at 5:30pm and will be presided over by Cleveland Mayor Frank G. Jackson as well as other Ohio State Legislators, Cleveland City Council members and Cuyahoga County Council members who will be in attendance. The AIDS Taskforce, which has been serving the community for over thirty years, will relocate to the new site—2829 Euclid Avenue (cross street: E 30th), Cleveland, 44115—which will house an AHF Healthcare Center, AHF Pharmacy, HIV testing & prevention services, food pantry, research division and will also serve as the Taskforce’s new headquarters.
WHAT: CANDLELIGHT VIGIL & BUILDING DEDICATION of ATGC’s new all-in-one AIDS facility in Cleveland that will house an AHF Healthcare Center, AHF Pharmacy, HIV testing & prevention services, food pantry, research division and will also serve as the Taskforce’s new headquarters.
WHEN: MONDAY, December 2nd 2013, 5:00 pm — formal speaking program at 5:30 pm
WHERE: AIDS Task Force of Greater Cleveland’s new all-in-one facility
2829 Euclid Ave (Cross street: E 30th), Cleveland, OH 44115 Tel: (216) 621-0766
WHO: the Honorable Frank G. Jackson, Mayor of Cleveland Tracy Jones, Chief Executive Officer, AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland Adam Ouderkirk, Senior Director of Program and Business Development Lyle Honig, CFO/Financial Services and Compliance as well as other Ohio State Legislators, Cleveland City Council members and Cuyahoga County Council members will be in attendance
B-ROLL: A 15-foot tall inflatable AIDS ribbon with the slogan ‘Treatment = Life’ will be atop the building and will be lit as part of the dedication ceremony.
CONTACTS: OHIO: Garith Fulham, Director, Public Policy & Advocacy, AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland, +1.216.621.0766 x 249 (office) / +18.104.22.16824 (mobile) [email protected]
“We are honored to be joined by Mayor Jackson and other esteemed dignitaries and guests in our World AIDS Day dedication ceremony for this new all-in-one AIDS facility on Euclid Avenue in Cleveland, a site that now allows us to put the majority of our services under one roof for the convenience of the clients and patients we serve,” said Tracy Jones, Chief Executive Officer of the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland. “For over thirty years, Taskforce has served the Greater Cleveland community with pride. Now, through our partnership with AIDS Healthcare Foundation, we look forward to expanding and improving upon the delivery of lifesaving HIV/AIDS care and services and bring many enhancements to the care and wellbeing of hundreds of individuals in Northeast Ohio living with HIV/AIDS.”
“This all-in-one service model has served us extremely well in several other cities where we provide care and services to people living with HIV/AIDS,” said Adam Ouderkirk, Senior Director of Business Development for AIDS Healthcare Foundation. “By providing free testing services, AHF Pharmacy services, an AHF Healthcare Center, case management, a food pantry, a research division and ancillary support services for clients and their families under one roof, we offer added convenience that makes it easier for people to both access care and services—and makes it less likely that individuals will fall out of care.”
Both the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland and AHF serve HIV-positive clients with a wide variety of free services that range from case management to medical care. AHF is a global organization that provides cutting edge medicine and advocacy to more than 250,000 people in 32 countries. It is the largest provider of HIV/AIDS medical care in the United States. The Taskforce serves over 1,200 clients and their families in six counties in Northeast Ohio by providing vital social services to include case management, nutrition, transportation and HIV/AIDS/STDs education/ prevention, research and advocacy.
HIV/AIDS in Ohio According to a report from Harvard Law School’s Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation, approximately 10,000 Ohioans are currently living with HIV, and another 8,600 individuals are living with AIDS. However, these numbers only account for people who are aware of their HIV/AIDS status, and national estimates project 20% of people living with HIV/AIDS have not been tested and are unaware of their status. According to an HIV/AIDS Surveillance Program conducted by the Ohio Department of Health, men were consistently diagnosed at a far higher rate than women between 2007 and 2011 (about 78% men to 22% women).
Consistent with national statistics, HIV/AIDS incidence was highest in Ohio’s African American population, which accounted for over 56% of new diagnoses for each of the five years tracked in the Department of Health report. Rates in the African American community have been slowly but consistently rising since 2007. Also on the rise are rates among youth aged 13-24, particularly among 20- to 24-year-olds, who went from accounting for 1% of new diagnoses in 2007 to 4% in 2011. Though the highest incidence by age was among people aged 45 – 64, those age groups showed a slow but steady decline in new diagnoses over the years studied, a trend that can only be mirrored in the younger demographics through an increase in prevention education.
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About AIDS Task Force of Greater Cleveland
The AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland (ATGC) is a community-focused nonprofit HIV/AIDS Service Organization (ASO) that offers a comprehensive continuum of non-medical HIV/AIDS services in Cuyahoga and five surrounding communities. As Greater Cleveland’s oldest and leading ASO, the Taskforce provides vital “safety net” support services and prevention education for those at greatest risk. It also leads public policy initiatives, ensuring equal rights and opportunities for people living with and disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS. Approximately 1,200 people with HIV/AIDS and their families are directly served by Taskforce support services, and many thousands more are served through prevention and advocacy initiatives. The Taskforce’s mission is “To provide a compassionate and collaborative response to the needs of people infected with, affected by, and at risk of HIV/AIDS. This is accomplished through leadership in prevention, education, supportive services, and advocacy.” Donations and volunteers are always needed and appreciated. www.aidstaskforce.org