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Turning Houses into Homes
January 21, 2015

"Safe, affordable housing is a health issue." 

-Paul Fitzgerald, President & CEO, AIDS Care Ocean State

Providing stable and affordable housing is fundamental for people with HIV/AIDS to receive life-saving medical support services and decrease the likelihood of exposing others to infection. 

AIDS Care Ocean State continues to be the largest provider of subsidized housing for persons living with HIV/AIDs in the state of Rhode Island. We are proud to announce that in January 2015 the agency opened the doors to the East Long Pond Apartments, ten individual and family units and the newest addition to our Housing Program. The two properties that comprise East Long Pond Apartments have undergone major rehabilitation over the past year and have been completely restored while maintaining their rich historical integrity. The most significant change will occur in late January, when clients of ACOS move in and the properties become a home. 

The Open House Reception was held on January 21st2015 and included lunch and refreshments, a speaking engagement followed by a ribbon cutting ceremony. We were honored to have wonderful speakers for the occasion including AIDS Care Ocean State’s Board Chair, Joseph Reddish III, our President and CEO Paul Fitzgerald, City Councilwoman Mary Kay Harris, City Councilman Luis Aponte, RI Housing's Deputy Director, Carol Ventura and Representative Anastasia P. Williams. We are so thankful for all of the inspiring and insightful words shared by all of our speakers. We were also honored to have special guests City Councilwoman JoAnn Ryan and Erin Donovan from Senator Reed's office join us to celebrate this monumental occasion. 

The East Long Pond Apartments is a HUD Section 811 supportive housing for low-income persons with disabilities. Nearly two million dollars have been invested into the planning, rehabilitation and construction of the buildings, which includes the $225,000 received from The State of Rhode Island Housing Home fund and $1.7 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Its opening is one of the finishing touches to the rehabilitation and revitalization of the Parkis-Comstock Historical District. 

Research from the National AIDS Housing Coalition continues to enforce the importance of housing support for those who are living with HIV/AIDS. Stable environments, and improvements in an individual’s housing situation has been directly related to improved access to health care, higher levels of antiretroviral therapy adherence and lowered viral load.

Including the East Long Pond Apartments ACOS now has built and developed 19 properties to serve our clients. We currently have 127 tenants residing in 48 apartments that we own and operate and federal funding sources allow us to sub-lease 47 apartments to assist an additional 76 clients. ACOS remains steadfast in our commitment meeting the housing and residential needs of people living with HIV/AIDS in Rhode Island. Putting an end to poverty, stigma, housing instability and homelessness is paramount in the fight against HIV/AIDs.


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