Recent Press Releases

For Immediate Release November 20, 2017

Thank You- A Reflection on 2017

San Diego- Nov. 20, 2017- As the holiday season approaches, we would like to take a moment to look back on some of the highlights of 2017 for San Diego Human Dignity Foundation with gratitude.

The 2017 Aston-Brooks Awards Gala, presented by the La Pietra Foundation, was a stunning evening spent celebrating many advocates for this community, both locally, and on a national level. Our local advocate, Bill Kelly, received the Richard Geyser Community Leadership award for his tireless dedication to improving the lives of LGBT seniors. Jeanne White-Ginder received the Sunshine Brooks HIV/AIDS Advocacy award for her involvement in education and advocacy surrounding HIV after her son, Ryan White, passed away as a result of the disease in 1990. The Lincoln Aston Public Service award went to Senator Barbara Boxer this year, for her advocacy of LGBT human rights in the Senate. Each recipient directed a $5,000 donation from SDHDF to a San Diego LGBT/HIV organization of choice. Special thanks to our sponsors for their support: The La Pietra Foundation, Hillcrest Social, Scholarshare, The San Diego Foundation, American Eagle Consulting and Bookkeeping, The Welty Group, Janssen Scientific Affairs, Ameriprise, UCSD, Texatron, Society of St. Paul, Mance Creative, Gay San Diego, Rage Monthly, and LGBT Weekly.

Our HIV Funding Collaborative partners also put on some excellent events for a good cause: The Recovery Ride and Red Dress Party San Diego! The Recovery Ride, held in January, brought together individuals excited to cycle for a cause. Thanks to this organization, their sponsors, and riders, The Recovery Ride raised $6,000 for the HIV Funding Collaborative.

Red Dress Party San Diego, held in September, brought together over 800 attendees for an evening of fun and philanthropy, and raised $30,000 for the HIV Funding Collaborative. These gifts, coupled with others, allowed the HIV Funding Collaborative to give out $70,000 to 10 different organizations supporting HIV prevention and treatment in San Diego County. For more information on our grantees, please view our impact videos here.

As we look back on 2017, we are thankful for the support of our donors and friends, and thank you for all that you do for this community.

About the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation

Established in 1996, the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF) is the sole community foundation in the San Diego region dedicated to the benefit of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. SDHDF funds programs and projects that promote equal treatment, tolerance, wellness, well-being, and above all else, human dignity. We work to strengthen LGBT organizations and leadership. We nurture philanthropic giving to support LGBT people and address important issues such as aging, arts and culture, health and wellness, youth and families, and civil rights. For more information, visit www.sdhdf.org. Connect on Facebook and Twitter.

 

For Immediate Release October 11, 2016

Former Board President Roderick Reinhart Takes Helm of The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation

SAN DIEGO – Oct. 11, 2016 – The Board of Directors of the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF) is pleased to announce that Roderick Reinhart, an experienced fund development and strategic planning professional with many years of outstanding service as an executive and board member of for-profit and non-profit organizations, has accepted the position of Interim Executive Director. Rod will immediately assume control of day-to-day operations.

Reinhart became involved with SDHDF shortly after its inception at the urging of San Diego LGBT community leader Bill Beck, one of the founders of SDHDF. Reinhart served on the SDHDF Board from 2002 to 2006 and as President of the Board in 2003 and 2004.

“I can’t think of a better person to guide the foundation as we strengthen and rebuild the organization,” said board vice president and secretary Peggy Walkush. “Rod recruited me to the board in 2003 and I was greatly impressed by his leadership, professionalism and integrity.”

Reinhart retired in 2008 from the City of Chula Vista, where as Assistant Library Director he managed a staff of more than 80 people. He moved to San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, with his husband Mauricio Diaz Rosales. The couple returned to San Diego last year.

“It is an honor for me to once again provide leadership services to the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation,” said Reinhart. “The organization is very near and dear to my heart.” He added, “The Foundation has a strong team of board members, professional staff, fund holders and donors, and I look forward to working with them all to continue to advance its vital mission.”

Reinhart is a respected leader with a long history of service in the San Diego LGBT community.

“As a long term supporter of the SDHDF, I am pleased to learn that Roderick Reinhart has been named Interim Executive Director,” said Bill Kelly, well known LGBT community leader. “I have known and worked with Roderick for many years and have great confidence in his ability to lead SDHDF forward.” Kelly previously served on the SDHDF board alongside Reinhart.

“Diversionary Theatre is grateful that the Foundation has shown great respect and support for the important contributions of Diversionary Theatre,” said Diversionary board president Todd Nelms. “We look forward to continuing a close and productive relationship as SDHDF makes changes in its management structure.”

Long time SDHDF supporter David Huskey, husband of an SDHDF founder Dr. Bill Beck and advisor of the Beck/Husky donor advised fund at SDHDF, shared his reaction to Reinhart’s appointment as Interim Executive Director. “Through the years I have stayed in close contact with SDHDF and its activities. I am pleased to learn of this decision and am sure this is a very positive move for the organization. I have known Roderick for 15 years and count him as a close friend and an accomplished non-profit professional. I know he will use his many skills to help SDHDF through this period of time into the future.”

“We are grateful for the support we have received from LGBTQ community leaders and organizations in this time of delicate transition,” said board president Joselyn Harris.

Mr. Reinhart’s immediate tasks will be to assess the Foundation’s financial strength and stability and to initiate fund raising activities to expand the Foundation’s outreach, mission, and goals. Mr. Reinhart’s full biography is available at http://www.sdhdf.org/about-us/sdhdf-staff/.

About the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation

Established in 1996, the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF) is the sole community foundation in the San Diego region dedicated to the benefit of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. SDHDF funds programs and projects that promote equal treatment, tolerance, wellness, well-being, and above all else, human dignity. We work to strengthen LGBT organizations and leadership. We nurture philanthropic giving to support LGBT people and address important issues such as aging, arts and culture, health and wellness, youth and families, and civil rights. For more information, visit www.sdhdf.org. Connect on Facebook and Twitter.

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For Immediate Release November 10, 2015

San Diego Human Dignity Foundation Announces La Pietra Foundation Permanent Fund with Initial $3 Million Gift

SAN DIEGO – Nov. 10, 2015 – This weekend was a time of celebration for the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation. Organization leaders took the opportunity at the second annual Aston-Brooks Gala on Saturday, Nov. 7 to announce the formation of the La Pietra Foundation Permanent Fund with an initial $3 million gift. Cheers erupted from the Hilton San Diego Resort and Spa ballroom when John L. Brown, executive director, San Diego Human Dignity Foundation announced the establishment of the La Pietra Foundation Permanent Fund to 350 friends and supporters.

“After much thoughtful deliberation my family and I choose The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation as the home for our fund because of their stellar reputation and strong leadership,” says Eugene La Pietra. “We look forward to working with them for the benefit of those most in need.”

La Pietra’s gift to the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation is a result of one of the largest land sales in the City of Los Angeles — the location of the Circus Disco and Arena Café nightclubs at 6655 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, California. The clubs are scheduled to close Jan. 1, 2016, after their last New Years Eve party. The nightclubs have been a destination for the LGBT community since the 1970’s. Circus Disco is the longest running, most successful nightclub in the nation. La Pietra and his husband Alejandro are well known philanthropists and have supported many charities for decades.

Eugene La Pietra was a founding donor of AIDS Healthcare Foundation, AIDS Project LA, The Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Community Center, The Lambda Archives, Gay and Lesbian Latinos Unidos and many more. He has been recognized nationwide as one of the leading philanthropists in the LGBT community.

“San Diego Human Dignity Foundation is proud and thrilled to have been selected by The La Pietra Foundation as the recipient of The La Pietra Foundation Permanent Fund,” says John L. Brown, executive director, San Diego Human Dignity Foundation. “We look forward to a strong and enduring relationship with The La Pietra family as we facilitate decades of future giving with this lasting gift.”

About the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation
The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF), which will celebrate their 20th anniversary in 2016, is the sole community foundation in the San Diego region dedicated to the benefit of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. SDHDF funds programs and projects that promote equal treatment, tolerance, wellness, well-being, and above all else, human dignity. We work to strengthen LGBT organizations and leadership. The organization nurtures philanthropic giving to support LGBT people and address important issues such as aging, arts and culture, health and wellness, youth and families, and civil rights. For more information, visit www.sdhdf.org. Connect on Facebook and Twitter.

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For Immediate Release November 10, 2015

Hundreds of San Diegans Celebrate Top Honors of Local and National LGBT Advocacy at Aston-Brooks Awards Gala Benefiting San Diego Human Dignity Foundation

Leaders also announce new La Pietra Foundation Permanent Fund valued at $3 million

SAN DIEGO – Nov. 10, 2015 – On the evening of Saturday, Nov. 7, 350 attendees gathered at The Hilton San Diego Resort and Spa to honor three LGBT advocates at San Diego Human Dignity Foundation’s second annual Aston-Brooks Awards Gala.

Attendees enjoyed a hosted cocktail reception, silent auction, dinner, a cabaret show and VIP entertainment featuring Broadway legend, Andrea McArdle, who turned heads with her cabaret performance singing excerpts from Broadway hits and the 1970s, including “I Dreamed A Dream” from “Les Misérables,” “Being Alive” from “Company” and closed with her iconic number “Tomorrow” from “Annie.”

The following awards were distributed to three individuals making a difference in the LGBT community here and around the globe:

  • Kurt Cunningham (posthumously) – Richard Geyser Community Leadership Award. Cunningham died in early October 2015, and is the only local honoree. Cunningham was a community activist who dedicated much of his adult life toward the betterment of the San Diego LGBTQ and HIV communities. Throughout his career, he worked closely with Imperial Court de San Diego, Trevor Project and The Center, with his most recent post being the LGBT Outreach Liaison for Mental Health America (MHA) of San Diego County. In this position, he advocated for mental health sensitivity and workplace/school trainings to create safe spaces for LGBTQ employees and students. Additionally, he had stepped up to the task of co-producing the 2016 Y.E.S. San Diego LGBTQ youth conference, a project supported, through grants and fiscal agency, by SDHDF. Councilmember Todd Gloria presented Cunningham’s award to Nicole Murray-Ramirez, who accepted the award on behalf of Cunningham’s family.
  • Wilson Cruz – Lincoln Aston Public Service Award. Cruz has most recently been seen as “Kenji Gomez-Rejon” on FOX television’s ensemble drama, “The Red Band Society,” starring Oscar winner, Octavia Spencer. Early in his career, Cruz won the hearts of audiences playing “Rickie Vasquez” on “My So Called Life.” It was the first openly gay teenager role to air on network primetime television. He has continued to earn fans and critical acclaim on television, film and stage. Cruz played the critically acclaimed role of “Angel” on Broadway and in the West Coast Premiere of the Pulitzer Prize and Tony award winning musical “RENT.” His portrayal earned him The Los Angeles Ovation Award and Dramalogue award. Cruz joined the board of directors of GLAAD in 1997 in order to assist the organization through a leadership transition, and joined the staff of GLAAD in 2012 as a National Spokesperson and Strategic Giving Officer. In 2008, Cruz received the GLAAD “Visibilidad Award” and in 2014, was honored as one of OUT Magazine’s “OUT 100.”
  • Archbishop Rev. Carl Bean – Sunshine Brooks HIV/AIDS Advocacy Award. As a young singer, Carl Bean brought churches to their feet and dance floors to their knees. From 1964 to 1972, he was the lead vocalist for the Alex Bradford Singers; his hit Motown single “I Was Born This Way” was the first gay liberation dance club hit. Bean founded the Unity Fellowship Church of Christ in Los Angeles in 1982 for gay, lesbian, and transgendered African Americans. Rev. Gerald Green accepted the award on behalf of Archbishop Rev. Carl Bean.

Tears fell and heartfelt cheers roared throughout the room when Councilmember Todd Gloria announced Kurt Cunningham to receive the Richard Geyser Community Leadership Award. As Nicole Murray-Ramirez walked onstage to accept the award on behalf of Kurt, several members of the crowd stood to honor the legacy he left behind.

“The Richard Geyser Award honors a community leader who displays excellence in ethics,” said John Brown, executive director, San Diego Human Dignity Foundation. “Kurt was an honest, truthful, compassionate community leader who displayed all the attributes that Richard Geyser considered important in community work.”

Each of the awards carried a $5,000 grant from the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation to the LGBT/HIV charity chosen by the award recipient or their designate. The charities selected are as follows:

  • The Kurt Cunningham Counseling Services Fund: San Diego Human Dignity Foundation has donated $4,000 to this fund at The San Diego LGBT Community Center and The Rob Benson Foundation has donated $1,000 for a total of $5,000.
  • GLAAD: Wilson Cruz has designated the organization as the recipient for the $5,000 grant in his honor.
  • The Unity Fellowship Of Christ Church’s HIV AIDS Ministry: The organization received a $5,000 grant from San Diego Human Dignity Foundation in honor of Archbishop Rev. Carl Bean.

During the program, Brown also announced that the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation will establish the La Pietra Foundation Permanent Fund, which has a value of $3 million, and is the largest gift SDHDF has received since it’s inception in 1996.

Eugene La Pietra was a founding donor of AIDS Healthcare Foundation, AIDS Project LA, The Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Community Center, The Lambda Archives, Gay and Lesbian Latinos Unidos and many more. He has been recognized nationwide as one of the leading philanthropists in the LGBT community.

The formation of this fund and proceeds from the event benefit the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation, one of the nation’s largest LGBT community foundations in the United States, benefiting San Diego’s LGBT community for nearly 20 years.

About the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation

The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF), which will celebrate their 20th anniversary in 2016, is the sole community foundation in the San Diego region dedicated to the benefit of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. SDHDF funds programs and projects that promote equal treatment, tolerance, wellness, well-being, and above all else, human dignity. We work to strengthen LGBT organizations and leadership. The organization nurtures philanthropic giving to support LGBT people and address important issues such as aging, arts and culture, health and wellness, youth and families, and civil rights. For more information, visit www.sdhdf.org. Connect on Facebook and Twitter.

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For Immediate Release March 2nd, 2015

San Diego Human Dignity Foundation’s HIV Funding Collaborative Awards $49k to 9 Charities for the First Half of 2015

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The Board of Directors for San Diego Human Dignity Foundation has approved the funding recommendations made by The HIV Funding Collaborative to make 6 month grants to several San Diego based HIV charities. The funding, which covers the period of January 1st through June 30th of 2015, supports a wide variety of essential services for those living with HIV/AIDS here in San Diego County.

Among the programs that received continued funding from The HIV Collaborative is The Peer Advocacy program at San Yisdro Health Centers. “Funding from SDHDF has allowed us to provide a coordinated and centralized system for benefit enrollment for people living with HIV/AIDS. We were able to maintain a designated staff member to administer ADAP and Ryan White applications throughout the year, which has greatly benefited our program and client flow. This funding has also allowed us to continue our long running peer advocacy program, where peer advocates (Amigos/Rafikis) provide guidance and support to newly diagnosed clients.”, said Karla Torres of San Yisdro Health Centers.

Stepping Stone also received a continuing award. Their Executive Director Catherine Aquino said, “SDHDF has provided Stepping Stone of San Diego the opportunity to provide case management services to our clients living with HIV/AIDS. When our clients come in for drug and alcohol treatment, our program ensures that we also address all their needs, including: primary medical care, medications, mental health, employment, education, benefits, and housing. With the grant from SDHDF, we were able to have a dedicated staff member to address these needs in a timely and effective manner. Stepping Stone is very grateful for the generosity and continuous support from the SDHDF and for all they do for our program and other community providers.”

Of the 9 organizations funded, one was a new grantee.

“Fraternity House, Inc. operates the only two Residential Care Facilities for the Chronically Ill (RCF-CI) between San Diego and Los Angeles specializing in services for persons living with HIV/AIDS. We have been providing services for persons living with HIV/AIDS for 26 years. Now, more than ever, HIV/AIDS service providers are being impacted by funding cuts in the face of a greater need for services as clients live longer. The Human Dignity Foundation grant of $5,000 will provide much needed operational support. At FHI our motto is “Keeping Love Alive.” With the help from the HDF, we will keep love alive together.” shared Fraternity House Executive Director, Larry Graff.


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Members of SDHDF Staff with Representatives from 2015 HIV Funding Collaborative Grant Recipients: Christie’s Place, Mama’s Kitchen, San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program, North County LGBTQ Resource Center, San Diego Youth Services, Family Health Centers of San Diego, Stepping Stone of San Diego, Fraternity House and San Ysidro Health Center.

Other HIV Charities receiving funding are Christie’s Place, Mama’s Kitchen, San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program, North County LGBTQ Resource Center, San Diego Youth Services, and Family Health Centers of San Diego.

The HIV Funding Collaborative plans on soliciting proposals in April for funding beginning July 2015. They are taking time now to restructure their funding guidelines in response the changing needs and new developments in HIV services. “ As new hope for ending HIV infections in the near future arises, The HIV Funding Collaborative needs to adjust our goals and expectations to encourage our HIV/AIDS service providing partners to develop the very best strategies for reaching their consumers.”, said San Diego Human Dignity Executive Director, John Brown.


The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation is committed to serving people living with HIV and AIDS through the Sunshine Brooks Fund at the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation. Thanks to the extreme generosity of Hattie (Sunshine) Brooks, SDHDF serves as a valuable resource for addressing HIV issues. Disbursements from the endowed Fund are allocated to the HIV Funding Collaborative along with funds from The McCarthy Family Foundation to make these grants possible.

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For Immediate Release January 23rd, 2015

San Diego Human Dignity Foundation Purchases University Heights Home of Diversionary Theatre and Lambda Archives

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San Diego Human Dignity Foundation has just closed escrow on 4545 Park Ave taking ownership of the building from Diversionary Theatre Productions, the non-profit organization that provides year round LGBTQ theatrical productions at the site. This smooth change of ownership will have no impact on the Diversionary Theatre’s work. Housed in the building as well is San Diego Lambda Archives which will also continue to operate with no impact as a result of the change of ownership.

“The intent of this purchase is to support the important work of both Diversionary Theatre and San Diego Lambda Archives by fixing their facility costs and allowing both of these beloved LGBTQ organizations to focus on their important work.”, said San Diego Human Dignity Foundation Executive Director, John Brown. Both the Archives and Diversionary have entered into new long term leases with San Diego Human Dignity Foundation that have fixed rental costs.

The concept of having a third party purchase the building to allow Diversionary Theatre to focus on artistic content and production came out of their strategic planning conference in February 2013.

“The gift of the building from a very generous patron strengthened our position in the community, and transferring ownership to SDHDF, a philanthropic leader in our community, enables Diversionary Theatre to further bolster our mission of providing high quality, world-class theatre productions that preserves and shares the stories of the LGBTQ community.” Stated Todd Nelms, President of the Board of Trustees, Diversionary Theatre. Now with a new Executive Artistic Director in place and the challenges of managing a multi-tenant building out of their hands, Diversionary Theatre is free to focus on the future.

“American Theatre is experiencing an extraordinary renaissance for new, multi-media and immersive work. Our landmark partnership with SDHDF gives us the time and resources to continue to create outstanding professional theatre, while forging greater relevance on the national scene with curiosity, innovation and confidence.” Says Matt Morrow, Executive Artistic Director.

Diversionary Theatre was founded in 1986 with the mission to provide an inspiring and thought provoking theatrical platform to explore complex and diverse LGBT stories, which influence the larger cultural discussion. As the nation’s third-oldest LGBT theatre, Diversionary’s vision is to foster and amplify the next generation of LGBT voices by producing new plays and musicals in a dynamic, inclusive and supportive environment that celebrates and preserves its unique culture. Morrow, who joined Diversionary November 2014, plans to announce his debut season April/May 2015.

Preserving Our Past, Building Our Future

Lambda Archives is also very happy about the new ownership. President Maureen Steiner was very excited about this development for the Archives: “We are very pleased that we won’t be worried about our lease or rent increases now that San Diego Human Dignity Foundation has taken over the building and giving us a 20-year lease. We will continue to collect, preserve, and teach our LGBT history as we have been doing since 1987.”

“We will now be able to focus our fundraising on supporting our operations and the several exciting projects in progress: identifying and preserving LGBT historic sites (learn more from Board member Chuck Kaminski), video-interviews with Trans* community members (Thanks to Meredith Vezina and Ellen Holzman) and Senior Oral Histories (shout out to Bob Lynn),” Steiner continued. “Now, we are strengthening our efforts to fulfill the teaching element of our mission. That is why we are launching a FAIR Act Curriculum Project. This effort is headed by Board Member Fernando Lopez and Educator Bill McClain. We have evidence that the bullying of LGBT youth drops by 40 percent in schools where LGBT history is taught. We are so proud to be able to work to create a safer environment for the future generations of San Diego youth.”

The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation – SDHDF – is the sole community foundation in our region dedicated to the benefit of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. We fund programs and projects that promote equal treatment, tolerance, wellness, well-being, and above all else, human dignity. We work to strengthen LGBT organizations and leadership. We nurture philanthropic giving to support LGBT people and address important issues such as aging, arts and culture, health and wellness, youth and families, and civil rights.

Media Inquiries and Information, Please Contact:

John L Brown, Executive Director
San Diego Human Dignity Foundation

Phone: 619 291-3383 Email: jlbrown@sdhdf.org

Todd Nelms, President, Board of Trustees
Diversionary Theatre
Email: President@diversionary.org 

Maureen Steiner, Board President
Lambda Archives of San Diego
Phone: 619-260-1522

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Press Release 03/04/14 – Being Alive HIV/AIDS Services Awarded $10,000 AWSD Matching Grant from San Diego Human Dignity Foundation

For Immediate Release | March 4, 2014

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Being Alive HIV/AIDS Services Awarded $10,000 AWSD Matching Grant from San Diego Human Dignity Foundation

The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF) is proud to announce an award of $10,000 to Being Alive HIV/AIDS Services, a non-profit organization that provides essential services to HIV/AIDS infected individuals and family members in San Diego.

In an Double Match Grant challenge from SDHDF, Being Alive was successfully able to secure over $10,000 in donations from supporters for their AIDS Walk San Diego team which was then matched by SDHDF to help support the life saving services for their clients. Being Alive has been serving the community since 1989.

“We are grateful for the SDHDF for allowing us this opportunity and for the generosity,” states Shannon Wagner, Executive Director for Being Alive.  “The grant will bring new hope and prosperity for those infected and affected by HIV/AIDS in the San Diego community.”

SDHDF announced earlier this year two new grant programs to give qualified non-profit organizations serving the LGBT community additional resources to fund their service programs. The SDHDF is the sole LGBT community foundation in San Diego dedicated to providing permanent, endowed sources of funds to support programs and projects promoting equal treatment, tolerance, wellness, and human dignity. The mission of SDHDF is to strengthen LGBT organizations and leadership while nurturing philanthropic giving to support the LGBT community.

“The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation is impressed with the great work of Being Alive San Diego and their quick action to this fundraising challenge,” said SDHDF Executive Director John L. Brown. “Using these funds wisely helps our foundation fulfill its mission – to connect people who care with causes that matter.  We know these grants will make a difference in the services needed in our community.”

To learn more about these grant programs or other ongoing philanthropy programs available via the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation, visit www.MyLGBTFoundation.org or call (619) 291-3383.

To learn more about Being Alive HIV/AIDS Services, visit www.beingalivesd.com or call 619-291-1400.

For media inquiries, please contact:

John L. Brown, Executive Director, SD Human Dignity Foundation
(619) 291-3383
jlbrown@sdhdf.org
Twitter: @SDHDF

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Press Release 02/11/14 – The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation Honors The San Ysidro Health Center’s HIV Programs

For Immediate Release | February 11, 2014

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THE SAN DIEGO HUMAN DIGNITY FOUNDATION HONORS THE SAN YSIDRO HEALTH CENTER’S HIV PROGRAMS

Health Center receives funding to support critical peer advocacy and emotional support programs for traditionally under served clients.Print

San Diego, CA—On Thursday, January 23, 2014, The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation honored The San Ysidro Health Center, CASA and Our Place Early Intervention Service (EIS) Centers HIV Programs with the presentation to its Board of Trustees of a check representing the first installment a $25,000, grant award  from SDHDF’s 2014 San Diego HIV Funding Collaborative. Funding for the San Diego HIV Funding Collaborative is generously provided by the Sunshine Brooks Fund at the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation. This fund was was established by the AIDS Foundation San Diego to continue their work supporting services in San Diego County to address the needs of people living with HIV/AIDS. In 2008, this fund was transferred to the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation.

SDHDF Board Member Mary Cruz and Janelle Hickey, SDHDF Development Associate, were on hand to present the funds that will be dedicated to support SYHC’s HIV peer advocacy and emotional support programs for clients that are traditionally under served and disenfranchised in the South Bay and Southeastern San Diego parts of the County.  SDHDF is the only local foundation solely dedicated to benefiting the LGBT community.  It funds programs and projects that promote equality, tolerance, health/wellness, well-being, and human dignity. It works to strengthen other LGBT organizations and their leadership. SDHDF nurtures philanthropic giving to support the LGBT community and to address important community issues.

CASA and Our Place are SYHC’s Early Intervention Service (EIS) Centers, each housing coordinated HIV services, including: Medical Case Management, Peer Support and Advocacy (Amigos de CASA/Our Place Rafiki Program), HIV counseling and testing, HIV prevention, mental health and substance abuse counseling, and a variety of other social support services (e.g. support groups, art and theater groups and women’s group). CASA and Our Place are located within one mile of SYHC’s two HIV primary care clinics: San Ysidro Health Center in the South Region and King-Chavez Health Center in the Southeastern Region.

According to SYHC’s HIV Service Manager Carolina Gonzalez-Garcia, the funding will be critical in helping to maintain CASA and Our Place services that are not supported by other grant sources, but are necessary to facilitate access to HIV services.  “We are privileged to have our work recognized by SDHDF and this funding will help ensure continuity of much needed peer advocacy and emotional support to clients that are traditionally underserved and disenfranchised.Every day The Amigos de CASA and Our Place Rafikis peer advocates make a tremendous impact on the lives and health of clients served.”

Who We Are

San Ysidro Health Center is San Diego County’s second largest Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) providing a continuum of comprehensive care to over 85,000 patients annually through its service delivery network of medical clinics, dental clinics, behavioral health centers, HIV/AIDS centers, WIC nutrition centers, mobile units, school-based health centers, teen clinic, and adult day health center. SYHC’s mission statement – “to protect, promote, and improve the health and well being of our community’s traditionally underserved and culturally diverse people” – highlights the health center’s long-standing commitment to provide the highest quality, easily accessible and most respectful health services regardless of race, religion, ethnicity or economic status.For additional information please visit The San Ysidro Health Center at www.syhc.org.

The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF), a 501(c)(3) organization founded in 1996, is committed to working to improve the quality of life in San Diego’s LGBT community by promoting responsible philanthropy to enact positive social change. Visit: www.mylgbtfoundation.com or call (619) 291-3383

Contact:

John L. Brown, Executive Director, SD Human Dignity Foundation
(619) 291-3383
jlbrown@sdhdf.org
Twitter: @SDHDF

Elizabeth Bustos, Director of Community Relations
(619) 203-6020
ebustos@syhc.org
Twitter: @SYHealthCenter

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Press Release 02/05/14 – San Diego HIV Funding Collaborative and San Diego Human Dignity Foundation Award Grant Stepping Stone of San Diego Receives over $32,000 in SDHDF Funding

For Immediate Release   |   February 5, 2014

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The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF) is proud to announce two grant awards, totaling over $32,000.00 to Stepping Stone of San Diego, a non-profit alcohol and drug recovery organization that offers intensive residential treatment and other recovery programs to the LGBT community and HIV infected individuals.

Through the San Diego HIV Funding Collaborative, Stepping Stone secured $25,000.00 to support their drug and alcohol treatment programs. The San Diego HIV Funding Collaborative is supported in part by the Sunshine Brooks Fund at the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation. The Sunshine Brooks Fund was established by the AIDS Foundation San Diego to continue their work supporting services in San Diego County to address the needs of people living with HIV/AIDS. In 2008, this fund was transferred to the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation. Thanks to the extreme generosity of Hattie (Sunshine) Brooks, SDHDF serves as a valuable resource for addressing HIV issues. Stepping Stone is dedicated to helping individuals who want to be treated for their alcohol and drug problems with their co-occurring disorders.  The organization has been serving the LGBT community and HIV infected individuals since 1976.  Their services include a 6 month intensive residential drug and alcohol treatment program and transitional housing for individuals living with HIV/AIDS.

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Pictured above: SDHDF Executive Director, John L. Brown; Stepping Stone CEO, Catherine Aquino; and Stepping Stone Board Chairman, Dario Jones

An additional grant of $7,157 was awarded to Stepping Stone via the AIDS Walk San Diego Double Match Grant program. A new program introduced in 2013, this program in conjunction with the San Diego LGBT Community Center and AIDS Walk San Diego, awards qualified HIV/AIDS service organizations with a double match for funds raised at AIDS Walk San Diego. Due to the hard work of the Stepping Stone team and the vital work they do for the community, it was the pleasure of the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation to provide them with this well-deserved award.

“Stepping Stone would like to thank John Brown and the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation for awarding our organization with this grant.  The program recognizes the importance of integrating medical and psychiatric issues throughout the treatment process.  These funds will allow us to continue to provide case management services to HIV infected individuals receiving treatment in our program.” –Catherine Aquino, Chief Executive Officer, Stepping Stone of San Diego

The San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF), a 501(c)(3) organization founded in 1996, is committed to working to improve the quality of life in San Diego’s LGBT community by promoting responsible philanthropy to enact positive social change. Visit:www.mylgbtfoundation.com or call (619) 291-3383.

Contact:

John L. Brown, Executive Director, SD Human Dignity Foundation
(619) 291-3383
jlbrown@sdhdf.org