UMOJA Health Access Point – Join Us for Sexual Health Screenings and More!

February 28, 11 am – 6 pm
Rafiki Coalition for Health & Wellness 
601 Cesar Chavez Street

We are excited to share an upcoming community partnership with Rafiki Coalition for Health Wellness, the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, 3rd Steet Youth Center & Clinic, and UCSF Alliance Health Project, to put on the UMOJA Health Access Point (HAP). The HAP is a one-stop hub providing sexual health services along with other supports for the African American community of San Francisco. The goal is to provide a holistic wellness experience empowering attendees with the tools needed to make lasting changes on their health journey through wrap-around services that meet their specific needs.

These free services include:   

  • holistic sexual health services 
  • cancer screenings  
  • grocery boxes  
  • healthy hot lunch  
  • massages  
  • self-care services  
  • community healing circles  
  • workforce supportive services  
  • wellness classes  
  • and more!  

Join us in our mission to empower the African American community of San Francisco with the tools and resources needed to thrive. Spread the word, share the love, and let’s make health equity a reality for all!   

Celebrating a Remarkable Milestone: Bare Chest Calendar Sets Fundraising Record in 2024 

In a monumental achievement, the Bare Chest Calendar and its 2024 team have shattered records by raising an astounding $262,956 during last year’s fundraising season—the highest amount in their 40-year history. Their innovative approach to fundraising has not only set records but also inspired a sense of camaraderie throughout the community.  

Left to right | 2024 Calendar men Nathan and David, Den Daddy Larry Rich, Scott Johnson, PRC CEO Chuan Teng, ASL Interpreter, 2024 Calendar men Ray and Al

To celebrate this milestone, we gathered for the third prelim competition event at the Powerhouse Bar on Thursday, February 15th, marking a night of celebration and community support 

PRC’s CEO Chuan Teng took the stage to express gratitude for the longstanding partnership. The lively crowd exemplified the power and excitement of coming together to support a great cause while reveling in great company. 

The Bare Chest Calendar, PRC’s oldest community fundraiser, holds a special place in our hearts, and we are forever grateful for their unwavering dedication. Founded in 1984 by Terry Thompson with a profound desire to assist those affected by the AIDS epidemic, this iconic fundraiser has consistently demonstrated a commitment to making a positive impact on our community. Visit our blog to learn more about the Bare Chest Calendar. 

A heartfelt thank you goes out to Den Daddy Larry Rich, the entire Bare Chest Brotherhood, and all the competing calendar men. Their selfless efforts extend beyond posing for shirtless charismatic calendar photos. These individuals devote every week from June through December to advocate and raise funds for important causes at local and statewide events.   

Left to right | 2024 Calendar men Nathan and David, Den Daddy Larry Rich, Bare Chest Board Member Scott Johnson, San Francisco Supervisors Matt Dorsey and Rafael Mandelman, 2024 Calendar men Ray and Al

Special appreciation goes to Supervisors Matt Dorsey and Rafael Mandelman for recognizing the Bare Chest Calendar with a certificate of honor. Their kind words about PRC on stage highlighted the incredible hard work our leadership team has undertaken and all we’ve accomplished over the past year and the invaluable role this fundraiser plays in supporting PRC and our clients. 

We extend our congratulations to the Bare Chest Calendar and the 2024 team for their extraordinary achievement and look forward to witnessing their continued positive impact for years to come. Cheers to a calendar that not only bares chests but also bares the generous spirit of our community. 

PRC Welcomes Dr. Lukejohn Day to the Board of Directors

It is with great pleasure that we announce the newest addition to our PRC family! Please join us in extending a warm welcome to Dr. Lukejohn Day, a highly accomplished and respected medical professional with a strong commitment to excellence in patient care, education, and healthcare leadership.  

Luke currently serves as Chief Medical Officer at UCSF Health System, where he spearheads the development and implementation of medical care policies across the institution. His pivotal role ensures the standardization of practices and procedures while fostering seamless interactions between inpatient and outpatient services. 

With an impressive track record in healthcare leadership, Luke previously held the esteemed position of Chief Medical Officer at the Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center (ZSFG) for five years. He remains deeply rooted in clinical practice as a gastroenterologist and professor and his research endeavors delve into the fundamental drivers of efficiency and quality. 

Luke’s commitment to healthcare extends beyond the confines of his professional roles. As a proud member of the Oglala Lakota Nation in South Dakota, he champions the cause of indigenous healthcare as the current President of the Association of American Indian Physicians (AAIP). With over a decade of service on the AAIP governing board, he has published extensively on colorectal cancer screening disparities among American Indians and Alaskan Natives. Moreover, his work advocates for the increased representation of indigenous physicians in healthcare, particularly within the field of gastroenterology. 

Luke’s dedication and contributions to teaching, research, and patient outcomes have garnered numerous honors and awards, highlighting the impact of his work. However, it is his unwavering commitment to service that truly stands out and deserves commendation. 

“I’m incredibly excited to be joining the PRC Board because I believe in the power of compassion and support to catalyze transformative change in people’s lives. Contributing to a cause that addresses such a pressing societal need aligns with my commitment to fostering healthier communities and empowering individuals to overcome adversity,” stated Luke. 

Luke brings a wealth of experience, expertise, and a passion for the health industry. His unique perspective and invaluable insights are sure to enrich our discussions, drive innovation, and propel us toward even greater heights of success. 

Please join us in extending a warm welcome to Dr. Lukejohn Day. We look forward to the impactful contributions he will undoubtedly make in the service of our vision to transform lives and improve systems of care for communities in San Francisco and beyond.





Happy Valentine’s Day from PRC and save the date

As we celebrate the holiday of love, we express our deepest appreciation for your support and engagement. Your partnership is invaluable, and this Valentine’s Day, we offer our heartfelt wishes to you and yours.  

Your care for our mission drives our passion for creating meaningful experiences through which we can share our work and our impact. With that in mind, we would be delighted if you joined us for one, two, or all of our upcoming events in 2024. We’ve curated a diverse array of gatherings that promise to entertain and enrich, and we can’t wait to share these moments with you. Here’s a sneak peek of what’s in store. Save the date!


PRC Open House
Celebrating our volunteers and five years at our Integrated Services Center

Wednesday, April 3, 5:00 pm
170 9th Street

Join us for the second annual open invitation to tour PRC headquarters as we celebrate our fifth anniversary at 170 9th Street. See first-hand the spaces where many of our life-changing services are offered, meet our dedicated program staff and incredible volunteers, and learn more about the experiences of our clients.

Read about last year’s event on our blog. Questions? Contact PRC Chief Development Officer Randi Paul.


Staff Appreciation Month
All May Long

For the third year running, PRC is celebrating its most important asset – its staff – who work hard all year long to provide high-quality, impactful services to community members who need them most.

We’ll show our gratitude with a full month of activities, including costume contests, ice cream and cookie deliveries, spin the wheel for prizes, and trivia games.

Have an idea for how to recognize PRC’s staff? Tell us! Know of a business that might donate toward our festivities? Ask them! We would love your participation!

Read about last year’s event on our blog. Questions? Contact Chief Development Officer Randi Paul


Advocacy Day
Wednesday, June 19, Juneteenth
Sacramento

PRC’s initiative, the Black Leadership Council (BLC), hosts its third annual Advocacy Day, “Black In Action”, an exciting opportunity for BLC members to meet with state leaders in Sacramento to discuss policy issues core to improving outcomes for Black Californians.

Questions or interested in participating or supporting this event? Contact PRC Chief of Policy and Government Affairs and BLC Leader Tasha Henneman.


Mighty Real Fundraiser
Friday, October 4, 6:00 pm

PRC’s signature annual fundraising event is named after “Queen of Disco” Sylvester’s song, “You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)”, to honor our visionary benefactor.

This celebration demonstrates all the ways in which PRC transforms lives and features opportunities to hear from clients, an exciting live auction and Fund a Need, fabulous performances, and a chance to socialize with everyone from political dignitaries to drag divas.

Read about last year’s event on our blog and photo gallery. More details and tickets for this year’s event to come. Questions? Contact Chief Development Officer Randi Paul


Songs of the Season
Tuesday and Wednesday, December 10 and 11, 8:00 pm
Feinstein’s at the Nikko

This quintessential San Francisco holiday-themed cabaret was founded by drag personality Donna Sachet and is produced by Billboard recording artist Brian Kent as a benefit for PRC.

Incredible performances seamlessly merge tradition and whimsy, accompanied by witty banter that captures the essence of the holiday spirit.

Read about last year’s event on our blog. More details and tickets for this year’s event to come. Questions? Contact Chief Development Officer Randi Paul


Community Winter Celebration
Wednesday, December 18, 1:00 pm

This new revamp of a longtime beloved tradition is a cherished gathering among PRC staff, volunteers, and clients.

The celebration features music and entertainment, games, raffles, refreshments, and grocery bag giveaways, and creates a greater sense of community for our clients.

Read about last year’s event on our blog. Stay tuned for more details. Questions? Contact Chief Development Officer Randi Paul


Your presence at these gatherings would mean the world to us. We look forward to creating cherished memories together in the coming months. Stay tuned for more details, and once again, Happy Valentine’s Day! 

With love, 
PRC

PRC’s Board of Directors visit Baker Street House

Last month, PRC Board members and leadership staff had an opportunity to step into the shoes of those we serve on a visit to Baker Street House, our original and oldest transitional residential treatment program. This 16-bed facility caters to individuals with serious acute mental illness and offers a vital lifeline for their journey towards recovery. 


Board members gained an intimate understanding of the client experience within our residential care homes and witnessed firsthand the compassionate care and support our clients receive. Board members engaged in meaningful conversations with the dedicated staff who make it all possible.

Lower left, then clockwise | Chief of Policy and Government Affairs Tasha Henneman, Board member Darren Smith, Board member Tamarah Prevost, Board member Michael Niczyporuk, Facilities Manager Rich Mentze, Chief Development Officer Randi Paul, Board member Josh Frieman, Chief Operating Officer Marc Gannon, Chief Clinical Officer Jessica Winterrowd, and Chief Programs Officer Beth Mazie

Baker Street House staff shared that the residential site operates on five fundamental social rehabilitation principles that underscore its commitment to fostering holistic well-being: 

  1. Normalizing the environment: Creating a supportive and inclusive atmosphere that mirrors everyday life. 
  2. Multidisciplinary staffing: Ensuring a diverse team of professionals collaborate to provide comprehensive care. 
  3. Client involvement in decision-making: Empowering individuals in their recovery journey by actively involving them in the decision-making process. 
  4. Program flexibility and individualized treatment: Tailoring care plans to meet the unique needs of each client. 
  5. Willingness to take risks: Encouraging a proactive approach in navigating challenges and facilitating growth. 

Board members had the following things to share:


“Thank you for hosting us today at Baker Street House. This was a great opportunity to learn a lot more about how one of PRC’s programs operates. I found this extremely helpful and hope to do more of it.”

“It was a great opportunity for us to come together to see firsthand all the great work being done to provide essential services to those in need. Looking forward to our next site visit!”

“I enjoyed learning about the facility. The staff is doing an amazing job.”

We extend our heartfelt thanks to Baker Street House program staff for graciously hosting us. Their insights provided invaluable context to the impactful work taking place within Baker Street House. Special appreciation goes to Jessica Winterrowd, our new Chief Clinical Officer, for consistently demonstrating exceptional leadership skills by effectively motivating team members and fostering a collaborative work environment.

This visit was not just a tour. It was an immersive experience that deepened our connection to the heart of PRC. As we continue our mission, we carry with us the shared commitment to making a positive impact on the lives of those we serve. 

In community, 
PRC

PRC welcomes Colin Hartke to our Board of Directors

We are thrilled to announce the newest addition to the PRC family, Colin Hartke, who joins our Board of Directors. Colin brings over 15 years of invaluable experience in healthcare, currently serving as the Senior Director of Marketing/Strategy at Quest Diagnostics.

Colin’s track record is nothing short of impressive, with a proven history of driving growth through innovative strategies and marketing initiatives. His commitment to health equity and humanitarian values aligns seamlessly with PRC’s mission, reflecting a genuine dedication to the well-being of those he serves.

Beyond his role at Quest, Colin is deeply involved in community service. He tutors high school students at Mission Graduates and volunteers for a national consortium focused on reducing exposure to toxic chemicals, showcasing his passion for making a positive impact on public health. As a leader and sponsor of “Quest Cares”, Quest’s volunteer employee group, Colin actively fosters a culture of giving back. Last August, PRC had the privilege of partnering with Colin, Quest Diagnostics, the National AIDS Memorial, and the San Francisco Community Health Center on a Community Roundtable event at the AIDS Memorial Grove, a collaboration captured in the photo below.

Left to right | Deena Lahn, Vice President, Policy & External Affairs, San Francisco Community Clinic Consortium; Billy Lemon, Executive Director, Castro Country Club; Dan Bernal, Vice Chancellor for Community & Government Relations, UCSF; John Cunningham, Chief Executive Officer, National AIDS Memorial; Chuan Teng, Chief Executive Officer, PRC; Lance Toma, Chief Executive Officer, San Francisco Community Health Center; Colin Hartke, Senior Director of Marketing/Strategy, Quest Diagnostics.

Please join us in extending a warm welcome to Colin Hartke. We look forward to the impactful contributions he will undoubtedly make towards our organization and achieving our mission.

In community,
PRC

Covered California Announces One More Week to enroll for Coverage in 2024!

In response to the increased demand for health insurance and disruption at their service centers, Covered California is extending the deadline to sign up for 2024 healthcare coverage to midnight on February 9, 2024. Any enrollment completed by February 9, 2024, will be considered effective February 1, 2024.

Covered California is the state’s platform for individuals to access affordable, high-quality insurance options. It is where consumers can compare health plans and review potential financial assistance to find the best coverage that fits their individual needs and budget.

Consumers can reach the Covered California service center at (800) 300-1506 for assistance. To avoid longer wait times or difficulties reaching a Covered California representative over the phone, consumers can visit CoveredCA.com for free and confidential online assistance. It is essential that eligible consumers take advantage of this extra opportunity to have health insurance for the rest of the year.

A Heartwarming Gathering: Extending Joy Beyond Our Clients to Community

We are thrilled to share the incredible success of our recent Client Winter Celebration, where we not only had the opportunity to spread joy but were also able to give back to our clients and community. 

The atmosphere at Rubicon Point Partners building, who kindly donated their space to us, was filled with festive cheer, as the space was decorated with sparkling lights installed by our amazing facilities team and 16 trees donated by the Guardsmen Christmas Tree Lot. Attendees indulged in warm cider, coffee, 400 delectable cookies donated by Danville Bakery, and mouthwatering small bites, provided by La Mediterranee Filmore. 

Kippy Marks, a virtuoso on the violin, enchanted the crowd with his musical talents, creating a magical ambiance. You may remember witnessing his incredible talent at our Songs of the Season event in early December. 

Tables adorned with engaging games and activities including an opportunity to make greeting cards for friends and loved ones, and a live raffle, added an extra layer of fun.  Clients departed not only with PRC souvenirs, gift cards, coffee tumblers, and more but also made connections with both new and familiar faces among the dedicated PRC staff. 

Undoubtedly, one of the main highlights of the event was a generous contribution—fresh groceries to support 250 households, courtesy of the SF Marin Food Bank. Each attendee left the event with a bag or several bags of groceries. 

What makes this celebration even more special is the way it rippled through our community. We transformed our client celebration into a community-wide event, extending our joy and giving back to our friends and neighbors at the San Francisco Community Health Center, Episcopal Community Services, Catholic Charities, and the El Dorado. Donations of cookies and grocery bags brought smiles and warmth to even more hearts. 

We were honored to provide taxi rides for our clients to and from the event to ensure they could be part of this heartwarming celebration. One of our clients summed up the impact beautifully, saying:

We are deeply grateful for the overwhelming generosity of our community, board of directors, and PRC supporters who not only attended the celebration but also contributed to its success with various donations. See the list of our generous donors below: 

Sponsored by:

This was a beautiful way for us to put closure to 2023 and welcome in 2024! We invite you to join us next time! 

In Community, 

PRC Team 

My Meeting with Bob

That was the voicemail that led to my first meeting with Bob two weeks ago.

Bob Burnside, a seasoned activist, sculptor, and community builder, founded Positive Resource in 1989, which merged with AIDS Benefits Counselors (founded in 1987) to form the organization that is now PRC. At the time, people living with HIV who were healthy enough to work were looking for odd jobs or part-time gigs to keep themselves afloat. So Bob, with just a word processor, started writing down peoples’ names and matching them with small jobs he knew about in the community. Bob’s gumption from three and a half decades ago is what created PRC’s Workforce Development program, which continues to help hundreds of people find work every single year. 

As I sat with Bob, I learned that he not only founded Positive Resource, but also spearheads community initiatives like the Corona Heights Community Garden and is the very talented artist behind the spinners you find hanging throughout the Castro, including the one behind Walgreens on Castro and 18th Street. 

Bob told me he is still working at 80 years old as your “Castro Handyman” though he doesn’t need any new clients because he has plenty. What he wants to do in his life now is to take care of nonprofits. As he said that, he handed me a check for PRC. In that moment, I sat stunned, in awe of Bob, this giant before me.  


As I have shared in the past, I feel my life is full of miracles. This meeting with Bob is one of them. Another is my meeting with George just last week at PRC’s Client Winter Celebration. George, a 70-year-old, long-term HIV survivor, told me he hadn’t worked for over ten years but he started taking classes through our Workforce Development program and now wants to work as an HIV peer counselor with PRC! In George’s words:

What a full-circle moment. 
 

Bob, thank you for your humanity and for paving the way for George and thousands of others who preceded him. You still have an impact on our clients to this day!  
 

Wishing you all a wonderful holiday and a bright New Year.  

Chuan Teng
PRC CEO

A testament to the resilience of the human spirit

I will never forget that fateful day 15 years ago when I was diagnosed with HIV. There was this deep shame that came with it. How could I let this happen, I wondered. How could I tell my family? I was deeply afraid of how others would react.   

But you needn’t worry. My story isn’t one of despair. It’s a testament to the resilience of the human spirit, the power of community, and the transformative impact of organizations like PRC, and supporters like you – thank you – that helped me along the way.  

When I was growing up in the 80s, the media portrayed HIV as a death sentence. At that time, it was. Medical advancements since then have made it so individuals with HIV can live a long vivacious life with treatment. However, the stigma has become so deeply ingrained that newly diagnosed people frequently experience significant mental health challenges, often a result of stigma and shame. That was certainly true for me.  

That shame led me to substance abuse, which I kept very private, again because of shame and because I believed I should have known better. It was an ER visit and the realization I didn’t want to let those closest to me down, that was the pivotal turning point.   

I knew I couldn’t face the journey alone, so I mustered the courage to reach out to a friend in recovery for help. I took time off of work, found counseling, and began the work of healing. So many people showed up for me. I also must recognize the privilege I experienced as a white cisgender male with a family support system in the Bay Area, something most of PRC’s clients do not have. Through these supports, I found a workplace that was inclusive and saw my ability to transcend difficult life experiences as an asset. I learned over time that you don’t graduate from self-growth.  

These experiences inspired me to want to help others. It’s so powerful to give back because you never know when it might actually save someone’s life.  

As I rebuilt my life and a new career in HR to create the same inclusive workplaces that helped me so much, I searched for additional ways to give back. I volunteered. But I wanted to more actively participate in bringing about positive change in San Francisco, especially for those with struggles similar to mine. So earlier this year, I joined PRC’s Board of Directors.    

PRC’s work resonates with me on a profound level. I have been so impressed by their continuum of services that meet people where they are:  

  • Low-barrier Hummingbird respite centers that present a safe space for people coming right off the street and linkage to additional care;  
  • Emergency financial assistance to preserve housing and medical care;  
  • Legal advocacy to secure and retain stable income and health insurance;  
  • 90-day residential treatment for mental illness and substance use;   
  • Supportive housing with individualized case management; 
  • Workforce development to get back to work from a disability; and,   
  • And by promoting and engaging in policy and advocacy to propel initiatives aimed at achieving health equity and fostering social justice.   

Together these programs lift up more than 5,000 individuals each year to a place of greater stability and more positive health and economic outcomes.  

We can’t do this work alone, however. We need donor support. As we near the end of the year, I ask that everyone reading this please consider making a year-end contribution today.

Your donation will:  

  • Provide lifesaving programs for those living with HIV/AIDS, mental illness, and substance use disorder;  
  • Offer integrated legal, social, and health services that address the broad range of social risk factors that impact wellness and limit potential; and, 
  • Help people affected by these challenges better realize opportunities and live healthier, happier lives.  

I’m also happy to announce a generous $10,000 match. With your help, we can raise $15,000 by December 31st, doubling the impact of your donation. 

Please give generously today by going to prcsf.org/donate, or consider giving via your donor-advised fund if you have one to help PRC to change lives like mine for the better. Thank you for your consideration.  

  

Warmly,  

  Michael Kyle  

PRC Board Member