A new global pandemic, a racial reckoning, and the presidential election shaped our lives and work in 2020. In a year marked by uncertainty and injustice, one thing remained undeniably certain: Our vision of health justice and ending health disparities had significance like never before.
As we have done throughout our history, San Francisco AIDS Foundation responded to the COVID-19 pandemic in stride. Our teams provided uninterrupted clinical services during shelter-in-place, created online spaces for substance use treatment and social support services, and even launched new programs to address the urgent needs of people experiencing homelessness and people who inject drugs. Our staff applied four decades of knowledge from the HIV movement to build a sustained COVID-19 response plan that lends our expertise to the San Francisco Department of Public Health and other community-based organizations.
We forged new partnerships in 2020 and strengthened those already in place. We came together with partners to call for progressive policies to support racial justice, and we helped a community coalition born from our Elizabeth Taylor 50-Plus Network announce The San Francisco Principles. In partnership with SFAF, the Oakland LGBTQ Community Center was able to launch its sexual health clinic. Our contributions to the International AIDS Conference, AIDS 2020 Virtual, not only ensured that the world could see the impact of Bay Area researchers, community-based organizations, and activists, but that the partnership is sustained through Crossbay Together.
We made significant progress in becoming an anti-racist organization by establishing a Talent & Culture division within San Francisco AIDS Foundation. Led by practitioners skilled in equity and inclusion work, this new area of our organization allows us to advance our racial justice work and ensure that Black, Indigenous, and all people of color, whether they are a client or a staff person, receive the support they deserve.
These accomplishments prove yet again that even when faced with unprecedented challenges, our community’s resilience and commitment to caring for one another will allow us to advance our shared vision of health justice. In a time when we all continue to need hope and to see progress, I hope that our annual report energizes you about the year ahead and the impact that your support has on the lives of so many people.
With your continued support and our strategic plan continuing to serve as our north star in the year ahead, I have no doubt that San Francisco AIDS Foundation will overcome any obstacles we face and that our community will be healthier on account of our work.
Joe Hollendoner, CEO
Written February 5, 2021