Allies and Champions Salon
As we ease into the new year, we are thankful for all of you! Our Allies and Champions Salon held in December was a wonderful chance to reflect on how the UCSF Alliance Health Project (AHP) is helping vulnerable residents of our city to regain hope, health and wellness. With our guests, we nibbled on outstanding appetizers from Canela and drank wine (donated by many of you!), within the amazing new gallery space at ArtHaus, thanks to our generous friends, gallery owners Annette Schutz and James Bacchi. The evening was a rare chance for AHP supporters to share ideas and celebrate achievements with our directors and managers.
We heard from Anthony, an AHP client who has struggled with substance use addiction so severe he couldn’t see a reason to go on living. Yet he found his way to AHP and his life has been transformed thanks to the acceptance, care and understanding he found with his case manager, his support group and through individual counseling. We all felt more hopeful as Anthony expressed his sincere gratitude and relief to have found his way out of depression, addiction and isolation.
Executive Director Jim Dilley, MD, spoke to the group about AHP’s role in San Francisco’s Getting to Zero (GTZ) campaign which aims for zero new infections, zero deaths and zero stigma for those living with HIV. Our GTZ initiatives include PrEP Navigation and Assertive Case Management. AHP is in its third year of offering PrEP navigation to anyone who tests HIV negative and wants to learn how PrEP can benefit their sexual health. Our program addresses inequities to PrEP access faced by men of color and trans women who have sex with men by offering information and help accessing PrEP. More than 600 clients have benefited from this program since its inception in late 2016.
Dr. Dilley also described how AHP’s Assertive Case Management program reaches out to our most vulnerable neighbors, those who are homeless or unstably housed, have fallen out of HIV care, and struggle with substance use and mental health concerns. Our case managers help those clients to rebuild their lives and reconnect to treatment that can restore their health and prevent the spread of HIV. AHP has also begun a new program for people living with HIV who are over 50 years old and in need of social and emotional support.
It was a celebration of hope, love and life and we look forward to you joining us for another one in 2019! All the care we provide would not be possible without your support.
Jim and Lori and the team at AHP!