Greetings HOPWA Grantees, Project Sponsors, and Friends,
We once again find ourselves approaching World AIDS Day on December 1. The Office of HIV/AIDS Housing (OHH) wants to take a moment to remember, reflect, and renew. We remember our friends, neighbors, and loved ones that we have lost to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. We reflect on the hard work done this year and years past to support those living with HIV and prevent new HIV infections. We renew our efforts in the fight to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
The 2019 World AIDS Day theme is, “Ending the Epidemic: Community by Community.” It recognizes that HIV affects each community differently, and that each community has a unique set of resources to work towards ending the HIV epidemic. Through the Housing Opportunities for Persons With AIDS (HOPWA) program we see communities utilizing different HOPWA-eligible activities and leveraging local resources to ensure members of the community living with HIV can achieve and maintain stable housing. Housing remains a critical component of health, particularly for those living with HIV/AIDS, and we applaud the work being done to provide supportive housing opportunities to community members across the country. In 2018, more than 100,000 households were provided housing assistance and/or supportive services with HOPWA funding, with 95% of households that received long-term housing achieving housing stability and 91% of all households having contact with a primary care provider. To find out more about how HOPWA funds are supporting communities across America, check out the 2018 HOPWA national profile.
There is more work to be done. The newly launched Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for America (EHE) initiative seeks to reduce the number of new HIV infections in the United States by 75% within five years, and then by at least 90% within 10 years. Housing should be used as a structural intervention to improve health outcomes for persons living with HIV and ultimately as a vital tool in bringing an end to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. We encourage HOPWA grantees, project sponsors, and stakeholders to learn about local efforts and elevate housing as a structural intervention to end the HIV epidemic.
This year, OHH will be releasing various tools and products focused on helping HOPWA grantees modernize their HOPWA programs by effectively using funding to address the needs of persons living with HIV in their communities. We will provide notification of product releases through this listserv. These new tools and products will complement resources already published, including the following:
OHH will continue to elevate housing as a structural intervention in ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the United States. We are renewing our efforts in the fight to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic this World AIDS Day. We hope you will join us and renew your effort to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic in your community.
Director, Office of HIV/AIDS Housing