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April 19, 2013

ARC Ohio merges with Violet’s Cupboard

Statewide group expands to Cleveland and Akron

Akron--The 300 clients of Violet’s Cupboard will now be served by a new Akron office of the AIDS Resource Center Ohio.

The center, often called ARC Ohio, is an AIDS service organization that covers most of the state, including Columbus, Dayton, Toledo and Cincinnati.

The employees of Violet’s Cupboard were officially folded into ARC Ohio on April 1. Violet’s Cupboard has existed for 25 years. It was funded under Ryan White Part B, which covers “emerging communities” with 500-999 cumulative AIDS cases over the last five years.

Akron is also served by the Community AIDS Network, which merged with the Akron Pride Initiative in 2010. CAN was started in 1996, and provides HIV testing, housing and education for HIV-positive people, outreach, referrals and risk reduction.

Violet’s Cupboard services included case management for drug assistance programs and health issues; these will now be covered by ARC Ohio.

“Together we will provide a seamless transition to ensure the best possible continuity of care for clients,” said Violet’s Cupboard executive director Janaris Alston.

ARC Ohio is also going to be working with HIV testing sites in Cleveland to bring newly-diagnosed people into treatment, and to re-engage with those who were being treated but dropped out of the program. These efforts will go across Ashtabula, Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain and Medina counties.

“ARC Ohio will work closely with testing sites in the transitional grant area to provide case finding, serve those newly diagnosed, and find those out of care and re-engage them in their treatment,” said Peggy Anderson, ARC Ohio’s chief operating officer.

These services are in addition to those of the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland, which provides testing, counseling, housing, transportation, and other services to people with HIV and AIDS in the Cleveland area, along with other smaller organizations throughout the city.

ARC Ohio began as the AIDS Foundation Dayton, then became the AIDS Foundation Miami Valley in 1992 before taking its current name in 2002. It merged with David’s House Compassion in Toledo in 2006. The Columbus AIDS Task Force came under the ARC Ohio aegis in July 2011, followed by the advocacy organization Ohio AIDS Coalition later in the year.

The statewide organization has offices in Dayton, Columbus, Toledo, Lima, Chillicothe, Newark, Athens, Mansfield and now Cleveland, Akron and Cincinnati. Another organization, Stop AIDS, still has a staff in Cincinnati now comprised of volunteers, while ARC Ohio has a prevention worker in their office providing services to men who have sex with men in Hamilton County.

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