Mazzoni Center Receives 5-Year Funding from the CDC for Intervention Projects

Thanks to a newly created HIV-prevention funding opportunity from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Mazzoni Center will receive $337,248 annually over the next five years to help continue three of our key intervention projects: HIV counseling, testing and referral services for MSM of color, for which we collaborate with GALAEI (Gay and Lesbian Latino AIDS Education Initiative); comprehensive risk-counseling services for HIV-positive or high-risk men to cut down on the risk of future transmission or infection; and our community-outreach program “Get Real.”

Mazzoni Center is one of five Pennsylvania agencies, and one of 133 organizations nationwide, to benefit from these CDC grants, which are aimed at community-based HIV prevention.  The grant programfold several former multi-year funding cycles that were nearing completion into one and seeks to expand prevention efforts among the hardest-hit populations.  HIV/AIDS service organizations were eligible for funding from the program’s Category A, which targets ethnic and racial minorities, or Category B, which focuses on members of high-risk groups, like men who have sex with men (MSM). The other PA-based agencies to receive CDC funding are: The Philadelphia AIDS Consortium, Family Planning Council and Public Health Management Corporation, as well as AIDS Care Group in Chester.

The Get Real project tells the real stories of local men — such as their coming-out experiences or their challenges living with HIV — as a way to promote public discussions about sexual health and HIV prevention and is a joint project of Mazzoni Center and PHMC, which has provided the research resources for the program.

Get Real’s original five-year funding was coming to a close around the same time the new CDC funding opportunity opened, so the new grant will allow us to keep this  program alive.

 “This money is essential not just for Mazzoni Center but for Philadelphia as a whole, in terms of keeping these resources here in the city for prevention efforts,” Director of Programs Ron Powers said.

Mazzoni Center has been a recipient of HIV prevention monies from the CDC in some form or another since 2000.  More information on the CDC can be found at: www.cdc.gov