Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Most Important Meal Online Auction

Friday, November 13th, 2020

MIM AuctionInstead of our usual cereal buffet in-person event, this year’s Most Important Meal takes the form of an online auction. It will run for one week starting on Sunday, November 15th:

https://charitygrow.org/Browse/C821127/Hudson_Valley_Community_Services

Gift cards and most physical items were donated by generous supporters. The TV/movie memorabilia is on consignment from CharityGrow and will ship right to the winning bidder. Winners may need to pick up other items from whichever HVCS office is closest to them.

Once someone registers and places a bid, the website will contact them if they are outbid. Since expenses for this event were so low, we already have about $6,000 in profits thanks to our sponsors.

HVCS’ ESAP Explainer Video (Expanded Syringe Access Program)

Monday, November 2nd, 2020

HVCS created this video for the New York State “End the Epidemic” campaign.

Advocate With Gov Cuomo for Harm Reduction Services

Thursday, October 22nd, 2020

Overdose, Hepatitis C, and HIV rates are climbing in New York State.
Do you have one minute to advocate for harm reduction services for people who use drugs?

Call the Governor and advocate!

Governor Cuomo’s Office: 518-474-8390

Use this handy phone script:

“Hello,
My name is _____________ and I’m calling from (part of the state you’re calling from) to talk to Gov. Cuomo about the overdose crisis and COVID-19. The current pandemic has worsened the overdose crisis, putting people who use drugs at risk across our state. The programs that provide services to them are losing. People are being arrested for carrying syringes and lifesaving medication like buprenorphine. New York law that criminalizes syringe possession and buprenorphine goes against public health, and can cause sharing or reusing of syringes. This will lead to increases in HIV and Hepatitis C infection.

Due to the Department of Health’s syringe shortage and fiscal issues, we are in a more urgent situation than ever before. Syringe service programs across the state do not have needed supplies, meaning people are carrying equipment longer, putting them at risk of arrest. Not only will decriminalizing syringes reduce unnecessary arrests, it will also reduce the amount of syringes that get unsafely discarded in our communities. Lifting Expanded Syringe Access Program (ESAP) limits at pharmacies will ensure people have access to what they need.

Governor Cuomo can and must act now. We need him to decriminalize syringes and buprenorphine, lift ESAP limits at pharmacies, and stop withholding harm reduction funds. *Optional: add in related personal experience*
Thank you for your time.”

Food & Toiletry Closets To Reopen Soon

Thursday, October 22nd, 2020

As part of our gradual reopening plan, effective November 2nd, we will reopen all HVCS food closets for non-Thrives/non-Emily’s Pantry clients . (Those two programs were giving out food already.) HVCS staff have been working hard to restock and have all the pantries ready for distribution by November 2nd. We’re sure you are looking forward to returning to our offices and some sense of normalcy to your life.

International Overdose Awareness Day – Video

Thursday, October 1st, 2020

On August 21, 2020, HVCS observed International Overdose Awareness Day with a Facebook Live event. Personal experience speakers, community service providers, and HVCS staff all recorded videos for the occasion. We wrapped things up with a Narcan training. This event was sponsored by PCSB.

Montefiore, Einstein bank $111M to lead group focused on HIV-related cancers

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2020

From Crain’s Health Pulse:

Montefiore, Einstein bank $111M to lead group focused on HIV-related cancers

Montefiore Health System and Albert Einstein College of Medicine said Tuesday that they have received a five-year, $111 million grant from the National Cancer Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, to lead the longstanding AIDS Malignancy Consortium.

The consortium has been a driving force behind national and international efforts to prevent and treat HIV-related cancers for 25 years, Montefiore and Einstein noted. The work is especially important as antiretroviral therapy to suppress HIV has helped tens of millions of people live longer and healthier lives. But the unfortunate consequence of living longer with HIV is an increased risk of cancer.

“People living with HIV shoulder an enormous burden of cancer,” said Dr. Joseph Sparano, associate chair for clinical research in the department of oncology at Montefiore, associate director for clinical research at the Albert Einstein Cancer Center and principal investigator on the grant, in a statement. “AMC is the only organization worldwide solely dedicated to the study, treatment and prevention of cancer in this group of people.”

The AIDS Malignancy Consortium oversees a network of 42 clinical trial sites in the U.S., Africa and Latin America as well as scientists who support its trials, Montefiore and Einstein noted. It also runs a career program to help the next generation of leaders in the area receive resources and support. It works directly with people living with HIV and cancer to help better identify the needs of the community.

Results from its clinical trials have helped to strengthen treatment guidelines as well as to advance the prevention and management of human papillomavirus-associated cancers and the use of precision medicine and immunotherapy for people living with HIV who receive antiretroviral therapy, Montefiore and Einstein said.

“During this next phase, we will build on these successes, developing and leading additional clinical trials designed to address the most critical needs of people with HIV and cancer, precancerous disease and individuals at high risk for cancer—most importantly, completing the Anchor trial,” Sparano added.

The Anchor study focuses on the prevention and treatment of anal cancer caused by HPV. Dr. Rebecca Levine, assistant professor of surgery at Einstein and a surgical oncologist at Montefiore, is serving as the Anchor principal investigator at Einstein and Montefiore.

“We expect the results of this study will have an enormous impact on clinical care,” Levine said in a statement.

The AIDS Malignancy Consortium was previously led by the University of California, Los Angeles. —Jennifer Henderson

HVCS In The News: Recovery In The Age of COVID-19

Monday, September 21st, 2020

By Dalvin Aboagye

As published on River Newsroom:

 

Hudson Valley Dance Festival To Donate $2500 to HVCS

Monday, September 21st, 2020

Hudson Valley Dance FestivalHudson Valley Dance Festival
Moves Online for 2020 Edition
with Stream Set for Saturday, October 10
Virtual festival to feature premieres,
made-for-the-moment dance films
and highlights from past festivals
Produced by and benefiting
Dancers Responding to AIDS,
a program of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS

Escape to the cultural heart of the Hudson Valley without leaving your living room when the Hudson
Valley Dance Festival goes virtual for the first time on Saturday, October 10, 2020. The festival is
produced by and benefits Dancers Responding to AIDS , a program of Broadway Cares/Equity
Fights AIDS .

Dancers Responding to AIDS has already pledged a $2,500 donation to HVCS.

Watch the hourlong stream at 7 pm Eastern, at dradance.org . The stream will be available for four
days after its premiere.

The lineup is set to feature a diverse collection of festival premieres, made-for-the-moment
filmed shorts and highlights from past festivals. The virtual festival will include an original dance
film by Stephen Petronio , created at his residency center in Round Top, NY; an outdoor solo filmed
at Kaatsbaan Summer Festival in Tivoli, NY, choreographed by Caleb Teicher featuring American
Ballet Theatre’s Catherine Hurlin ; a performance from So You Think You Can Dance ’s Ricky Ubeda
choreographed by Billy Griffin and more. The full lineup will be announced in the coming weeks.
“We’ll miss gathering on the banks of the Hudson River and amid the gorgeous fall foliage, but we’re
happy to continue the tradition of sharing breathtaking dance that gives back to and celebrates the
Hudson Valley community,” said Denise Roberts Hurlin, founding director of Dancers Responding
to AIDS. “In these unprecedented times, we’re thrilled to come together virtually and provide
immediate help to those affected by COVID-19, HIV/AIDS and other life crises in the area and
across the country.”

The money raised during the Virtual Hudson Valley Dance Festival will help Broadway Cares provide
additional, emergency grants to 13 organizations based in the Hudson Valley that are already part
of its National Grants Programs. The organizations are Albany Damien Center and Alliance for
Positive Health in Albany, Animalkind, Columbia-Greene Community Foundation and Hudson Valley
SPCA in Hudson, Matthew 25 Food Pantry and Community Hospice in Catskill, Hudson Valley
Community Services in Hawthorne, Hudson Valley LGBTQ Community Center in Kingston, Rock
Steady Farm in Millerton, Roe Jan Food Pantry in Hillsdale, TOUCH (Together Our Unity Can Heal) in
Congers and Troy Area United Ministries in Troy.

The annual in-person dance festival, traditionally held at Historic Catskill Point in Catskill, NY, has
raised $910,688 for people in need across the country and in the Hudson Valley during the festival’s
seven editions.

Dancers Responding to AIDS relies on the extraordinary compassion and efforts of the performing
arts community to fund a safety net of social services for those in need. As a program of Broadway
Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, DRA supports the essential programs of The Actors Fund, including the
HIV/AIDS Initiative and The Dancers’ Resource, as well as more than 450 AIDS and family service
organizations nationwide.

For more information, please visit Dancers Responding to AIDS at dradance.org , at
facebook.com/DRAdance , at instagram.com/DRAdance , at twitter.com/DRAdance and at
youtube.com/DRAdance .
# # #

NYS Withholding Payments to HVCS: Substance Use Programs Could Be Impacted

Friday, July 31st, 2020

Gotham Gazette reported on New York State’s withholding of payments on contractual services already provided by HVCS and its potential impact on programs and staffing. HVCS is not the only nonprofit facing this dilemma by far. Thanks to Gotham Gazette for covering this issue.

“With the pandemic blowing a hole in the economy and leading to a drastic drop in state tax revenue, budget officials have for months been withholding payments for state contracts to manage cash flows. Among the victims of that fiscal approach are substance use treatment providers who are being forced to cut already-limited services and consider staff layoffs and furloughs, which they say will likely lead to a sharp increase in overdoses and new disease outbreaks around the state.”

Read the full article here.

Aging In Prison: A RealHealth Article Includes Perspective From HVCS

Tuesday, July 28th, 2020

Jennifer Brathwaite, our Director of Education and Prevention, is quoted in this two-part article on aging in prison on RealHealth.com.

This a lengthy yet eye-opening article that is well worth the read. Jennifer’s contributing quotes appear in Part Two.

Here’s an excerpt:

Brathwaite finds that sometimes formerly incarcerated seniors may not be aware and educated about issues concerning HIV. “While I wouldn’t want to stereotype or put everyone in the same group, I think that with our older population, there is less knowledge or access to information that’s current about the advancements in this area and in what we know about HIV, hep C, STIs [sexually transmitted infections], infectious disease transmission and things like that,” she observes. “I think there’s still a lot of stigma, specifically around HIV, and a lack of knowledge about how the virus is transmitted.”

Part One

Part Two