Who We Are
At PRC, we believe everyone deserves an advocate and an opportunity.
PRC (formerly Positive Resource Center) has been transforming the Bay Area for decades, helping those affected by HIV/AIDS, substance use, or mental health issues realize their best selves by providing the support and services they need to reclaim their lives.
Services include emergency financial assistance for short-term security; legal representation for access to basic income and healthcare benefits; and residential treatment, supportive housing, and employment training for longer-term social rehabilitation.
Having recently merged with the AIDS Emergency Fund and Baker Places, Inc., PRC’s newly interconnected services help over 5,000 clients per year on their path toward long-term stability and success.
A longtime pillar of the community, we have grown, and we have changed, and we’ll continue to grow and change. We’ll add new services, and find new partners to work alongside us. But, through it all, we will remain committed to the same core ideals we began with:
- We will continue to be welcoming and accepting of ALL people;
- We will stand up, speak out, and provide both urgent and long-term support for those who too often are marginalized or ignored;
- And we will never, ever stop working to empower our clients by helping the whole person – moving beyond merely addressing their health and tackling the larger social issues that affect them.
Our mission is to help people affected by HIV/AIDS, substance use, or mental health issues better realize opportunities by providing integrated legal, social, and health services that address the broad range of social risk factors that impact wellness and limit potential.
Values That Guide Us
Our values, together with our mission statement, guide our work. They are used to address issues that arise within the agency, both in ongoing operations and in strategic planning.
We Aspire to provide services that:
Give clients the knowledge they need to make their own choices.
Aid all clients in a culturally-appropriate way.
Utilize a client-centered model, emphasizing one-on-one and group relationships.
Are easy to access.
We aspire to be an organization that:
Is culturally competent and diverse across all levels, from volunteers to our staff to our board.
Respects and seeks participation from all agency stakeholders, including people living with HIV, in all areas of the organization.
Operates at all levels with accountability, honesty and integrity.
We aspire to meet the needs of all people affected by or at risk for HIV, including:
People of any sexual orientation or gender identity.
Immigrants, regardless of immigration status, and people with limited English proficiency.
People who are (or who have been) incarcerated; ex-offenders; people with dependents; people of color; people with mental or physical disabilities, including the deaf and hard of hearing; women; youth; seniors; sex workers; active drug users; and people in recovery.
In Their Own Words
“I found my attorney to be incredibly professional and efficient, and I feel fortunate to have had her as an advocate. I had recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer, and she was exceptional in helping me navigate the benefit system. Most importantly, her people skills, coupled with her efficiency, were a real port in the storm for me.”
— PRC Client
A History of Service
Today, PRC offers a multitude of services that help thousands of people every year. But things started off simply: In 1987, a former Social Security Administration employee named Patrick James founded AIDS Benefits Counselors (ABC) with the help of a small cadre of dedicated volunteers.
Driven by a deep desire to help those affected by HIV navigate their way through a cumbersome process and get the disability benefits they deserved, ABC operated for months out of people’s homes without financial support. Later that year, thanks to a modest but meaningful gift of $500 from People with AIDS – San Francisco, along with pro bono legal services from the team at Pettit & Martin, ABC filed for its incorporation and tax-exempt status.
In March of 1989, founder and key volunteer Patrick James died of complications from AIDS. ABC was devastated by the loss, but did its best to regroup and find creative ways to provide the same level of service using legal interns and volunteers. Over the next few years, ABC moved to a more permanent home in the Castro District, hired staff, and received first-time local government funding from the Department of Public Health and first-time federal funding through the Ryan White CARE Act. By the end of 1991, ABC had an operating budget of over $14,000 and two full-time staff members.
Meanwhile, in 1992, the Life Center, a local HIV/AIDS service provider, was approached by community members to develop employment resources for people living with HIV/AIDS – Positive Resources was founded as a result of their efforts.
Four years after this program’s formation, however, the Life Center fell on hard financial times. Putting the Positive Resources program out to bid, the Life Center’s Board of Directors entertained offers from a variety of non-profits, ultimately accepting ABC’s offer in 1996. After operating in separate locations for two years, ABC and Positive Resources came together under one roof at 973 Market Street in 1998. The agency officially changed its name to Positive Resource Center in 1999.
Since then, PRC has experienced extraordinary growth. PRC modified its Mission Statement in 2004 to expand services to people at risk for HIV/AIDS, including those with mental health disabilities. In 2015, PRC began discussions of a merger with Baker Places, Inc., followed by AIDS Emergency Fund in 2016. Both mergers were approved in 2016, bringing Baker Places’ substance use and mental health services to the PRC portfolio, as well as expanding our services for people with HIV/AIDS through AIDS Emergency Fund’s Emergency Financial Assistance program.
As of 2017, Positive Resource Center is now officially just “PRC.” The result of a year-long rebranding effort, this new name also comes with a new logo (called “Bridge to Betterment”) and a new feel. Warm and welcoming, bold and inspiring, knowledgeable and optimistic, our new brand seeks to reflect the values and hopes of our newly merged organization.
AIDS Benefits Counselors (ABC) founded.
ABC incorporated as a 501 (c)(3) organization.
ABC operates with a budget of $14,698 and a full-time staff of 2.
Positive Resources employment services program founded.
ABC acquires Positive Resources, operating on a budget of $400,000 with a full-time staff of 7.
Benefits Counseling and Employment Services programs merged under one roof, now operating with a budget of $800,000 and 15 full-time staff.
Agency name officially changed to Positive Resource Center.
Agency transitions into survival mode, due to financial crisis. Staff reduction from 24 to 15.
Agency stays afloat thanks to Employment Development Department contract and a Department of Public Health SSI Mental Health Pilot Project. New operating budget of $1 million.
Current PRC CEO Brett Andrews hired as Executive Director.
PRC moved to 785 Market Street. PRC's mission is modified to include at-risk populations. Operating at $1.25 million budget with a staff of 18.
Expansion at 785 Market Street. PRC budget is now $1.5 million, with a 24-person staff.
PRC operating at $2 million budget with 29 people on staff.
Further expansion at 785 Market Street. Operating at $2.6 million budget with 32 full-time staff members.
Equal Access to Healthcare Program launched in response to the Affordable Care Act.
Discussion of merger with Baker Places, Inc., begins.
Discussion of merger with AIDS Emergency Fund begins. Both it and the merger with Baker Places, Inc., are approved by the PRC Board of Directors.
First direct federal funding from Health Resources and Services Administration to support PRC's new Integrative Health Analysis model of care.