April 19, 2018 at 1:58 pm EDT | by Lou Chibbaro Jr.
AIDS foundations seek to end epidemic in South
Elton John Foundation, gay news, OUTright Center, Elton John, David Furnish, gay news, Washington Blade

Elton John and David Furnish (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

The Elton John AIDS Foundation, the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation, and the Aileen Getty Foundation have announced they are joining forces to award an expanded series of grants aimed at “ending the AIDS epidemic in the Southern United States.”

In an April 9 statement, officials with the three foundations said they would be awarding grants for $625,000 each to 12 organizations that would seek to end, among other things, the disproportionate impact of AIDS in the South on young people and communities of color.

“We’re thrilled to have the Aileen Getty Foundation join our existing partners at The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation, making this one of the largest philanthropic partnerships addressing AIDS in the Southern United States,” said Elton John AIDS Foundation Chair David Furnish.

“By bringing particular focus on the needs and aspirations of young people and communities of color, and by delivering support to community-rooted organizations that have been engaging the epidemic for years, this partnership has incredible potential to reduce transmissions, improve quality of life, and speed the South’s progress toward an AIDS-free generation,” Furnish said.

Among the projects the grants will support, according to a statement released by the Elton John AIDS Foundation, are a “welcoming, affirming, and safe center for LGBTQ youth” in Birmingham, Ala.; “comprehensive and LGBTQ-inclusive youth wellness services” in Corpus Christi, Texas; “HIV-specific services, including pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis education” in Memphis, Tenn.; and “expanded mobilization and advocacy programs for LGBTQ youth of color” in Atlanta, Ga.

“Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation is once again extremely honored and humbled to be on the forefront of a transformative HIV response in the U.S. south in concert with Elizabeth Taylor’s dear friend, Elton John, and family member, Aileen Getty,” said Joel Goldman, managing director of the Taylor Foundation.

Lou Chibbaro Jr. has reported on the LGBT civil rights movement and the LGBT community for more than 30 years, beginning as a freelance writer and later as a staff reporter and currently as Senior News Reporter for the Washington Blade. He has chronicled LGBT-related developments as they have touched on a wide range of social, religious, and governmental institutions, including the White House, Congress, the U.S. Supreme Court, the military, local and national law enforcement agencies and the Catholic Church. Chibbaro has reported on LGBT issues and LGBT participation in local and national elections since 1976. He has covered the AIDS epidemic since it first surfaced in the early 1980s. Follow Lou

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