Gov. Rod Blagojevich has announced $2.55 million in grants to 17 community-based organizations across Illinois to provide housing services for individuals living with HIV/AIDS. The grants will be used to provide such items as lodging and meals to residents; rehabilitation and facility repair; and supportive services such as case management, mental health counseling and substance abuse treatment.
'People fighting HIV/AIDS shouldn't have to make a choice between being able to afford the medications they need, or being able to pay for basic living expenses like rent and food,' Blagojevich said. 'These grants are one more way in which we're helping making sure that those living with HIV/AIDS have a stable living environment in which to better fight this disease.'
'According to a recent study, people who are not properly housed are sixteen times more likely to have HIV/AIDS,' said Reverend Stan Sloan, CEO of Chicago House, one of the grant recipients. 'The need for HIV/AIDS housing continues to skyrocket and this grant from the Illinois Department of Public Health will help Chicago House reduce that need in the City of Chicago.'
Among the other recipients of grants are AIDSCare ( Chicago ) , Jo Ray House ( Chicago ) , Phoenix Center ( Springfield ) , Bethany Place ( Belleville ) , The Children's Place Association ( Chicago ) and Vision House ( Chicago ) .
The amount granted this year is $125,000 more than last year, according to Blagojevich spokesman Justin DeJong.
The Illinois Department of Public Health has awarded the federal HUD Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS ( HOPWA ) grants since 1996.