San Francisco AIDS Foundation
Ever since the Kaposi’s Sarcoma Research and Education Foundation, founded in 1982 by Cleve Jones, Marcus Conant, Frank Jacobson and Richard Keller, reorganized as the San Francisco AIDS Foundation in 1984, SFAF has promoted health, wellness, and social justice for communities most impacted by HIV. They offer sexual health services, including HIV testing and access to treatment; substance use services, including a harm reduction center; services designed specifically for the community of long-term HIV/AIDS survivors; Hepatitis-C services; and much more—all free of charge. SFAF also engages in advocacy at the local, state, and federal levels, often with community partners, to advance compassionate and just policies and programs.
Just a personal note here: I’ve worked closely with the folks at the San Francisco AIDS Foundation for some years now, as both a client and a volunteer, and they are the most diverse, compassionate, dedicated, skilled group I’ve ever spent time with. Partially due to SFAF’s work, San Francisco saw a record-breaking low of only 160 new HIV transmissions in all of 2019. I hope you’ll help them to continue their success.
Since this is the first time that SFAF has appeared in our Holiday Gift Guide, we decided to feature two new items available among many others in their online shop — both designed to help take the chill out of the winter mornings and evenings.
Tell Me More: Among the dozens of items available in the SFAF shop, in their Featured Collection there are two new items of particular interest.
The Health Justice for All Gender-Neutral Hoodie: “Everyone needs a cozy go-to hoodie to curl up in, so go for one that’s soft, smooth, and stylish,” their shop says, and this one is perfect for that. Made of 50% cotton, 50% polyester with double-needle stitching throughout and air-jet spun yarn with a soft feel and reduced pilling, the hoodie features a double-lined hood, rib knit cuffs, and a front pouch pocket. It also features the SFAF logo on the front. The same design is available on gender-neutral T-shirts.
The Health Justice for All Mug: Perfect for your morning coffee or your evening hot chocolate, this ceramic mug is available in 11-ounce and 15-ounce sizes. The mug is glossy white with Health Justice For All emblazoned on the front, and SFAF’s logo and slogan on the back. The mugs are dishwasher- and microwave-safe.
How Much: The Health Justice For All Hoodie is $30 in sizes S to 5XL; the t-shirts are $25 in four different colors and sizes XS to 4XL. The Health Justice For All Mug is $12 for both sizes.
Who Benefits: All profit from the sales these items will benefit the San Francisco AIDS Foundation and will help them to continue to serve their 25,000 clients in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Good Cheer to All!
Celebrating the Holidays during a raging pandemic might be, well, a little awkward for all of us this year. “Making merry” and spreading “good cheer” might seem incongruous, even disrespectful, in a year when hundreds of thousands of our countrymen have perished from COVID-19 and several million more have been infected. It may be difficult to open our bruised and battered hearts enough to let in the spirit of giving.
But I remember many years during the height of the AIDS pandemic when we lived with even more death and chaos than we’ve lived with this year. I remember years when the Holiday season was filled with more funerals and memorials than holiday parties. And still, every year, even the worst years, we gathered our friends and families together for Holiday meals; we ooh’d and ahh’d over gifts we exchanged with each other; we popped open the champagne bottles and toasted our friends, living and gone. We did these things because we needed them—we needed these rituals to show ourselves that despite all the death and chaos that engulfed us, there is still Love in the world, that it is still possible to find or make Joy in our lives, that mourning our dead and celebrating Life are not mutually exclusive.
We surely need those rituals this year!
And so, we here at A&U continue our tradition of spotlighting holiday gifts that perform double duty—they will charm and delight the recipient of the gifts, of course, but they will also raise much-needed funds for HIV/AIDS organizations and charities. From silly and campy to luxurious and fashionable, in every price range, the gifts highlighted here are sure to warm even the most battered hearts. We hope you will enjoy giving them as much as your friends will enjoy receiving them.
We wish all of you a joyous, heart-centered Holiday Season filled with love and good cheer. Now go out there and make merry!
Hank Trout, Senior Editor, edited Drummer, Malebox, and Folsom magazines in the early 1980s. A long-term survivor of HIV/AIDS (diagnosed in 1989), he is a forty-year resident of San Francisco, where he lives with his husband Rick. Follow him on Twitter @HankTroutWriter.