The Elton John AIDS Foundation Wednesday announced more than $3.2 million in new grants, bringing the Foundation’s total grant disbursements for the calendar year 2014 to an impressive $6.857 million. These end-of-year grants represent the Elton John AIDS Foundation’s continued commitment to helping all people infected with HIV and combatting stigma in communities most threatened by the virus.
With this third and final round of grant-making for the year, EJAF awarded 12 new and 40 renewal grants to innovative projects addressing the Elton John AIDS Foundation’s strategic grant priorities. This final round includes six new grants funded under the Elton John AIDS Foundation’s LGBTQ Community Initiative, which brings the Foundation’s investments in this new initiative to more than $1.1 million this year.
“The Elton John AIDS Foundation is committed to confronting HIV/AIDS where it exists,” said Elton John AIDS Foundation founder Elton John. “We recognize that the health needs and rights of LGBTQ people are critical components to ending HIV in the United States. The Foundation also recognizes the lack of funding and leadership in this area and is rising to the challenge to meet this need.”
The Elton John AIDS Foundation’s strategic grant priorities for 2014 are as follows:
The Health and Rights of Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People
Building on the four major Round 2 grants for national LGBTQ organizations announced in October (i.e., Human Rights Campaign, National Black Justice Coalition, Transgender Law Center, and the Point Foundation), this new round of grants includes: renewal grants for over 20 LGBTQ-focused programs; one additional national LGBTQ grant to the Third Wave Fund, and several new locally-focused grants: Racial Justice Action Center in Atlanta, FreeState Legal in Baltimore, Casa Ruby and the Wanda Alston Foundation in Washington DC, and the L.A. LGBT Center.
Sexual Health and the Rights of Young Adults
To help young people campaign for health policies and services relevant to their needs, this round of grants includes renewal awards to leading youth advocacy and service organizations such as Hetrick Martin, Queerocracy, and JASMYN, and a new grant to Friends for Life in Memphis.
The Health and Rights of Black Americans
The Elton John AIDS Foundation staunchly supports the efforts of black activists in the U.S. to improve HIV testing, treatment, and access to health care. This round of grants includes renewal awards to groups such as Positive Women’s Network and the Medical AIDS Outreach Selma Project, and new grants to several small local black-led organizations such as Guiding Right in Oklahoma and Central Louisiana AIDS Support Services.
The Health of People Who Have Been Incarcerated
This round of grants includes 10 renewal awards totaling $507,000 to help people getting out of prison get the support they need. Renewal awards include the ACLU National Prisons Project and Emory University’s Center for the Health of Incarcerated People. The Elton John AIDS Foundation also awarded increased funding to the Center for HIV Law and Policy for work to modernize laws criminalizing people living with HIV.
HIV Policy and Advocacy
This round of grants includes renewals to over 20 HIV policy and advocacy projects totaling more than $750,000, including state-wide HIV policy coalitions in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and North Carolina. Two new grants were awarded to the Desiree Alliance to elevate the issue of HIV among sex worker rights activists and to the University of Toronto International Human Rights Program to improve Canada’s refugee, asylum, and immigration policies for people who are HIV+ or LGBT.
“We are extremely excited about the innovative work being undertaken by these grantees,” said Elton John AIDS Foundation Chairman David Furnish, “and we are deeply grateful to all of our generous and loyal donors for supporting EJAF’s life-saving work.”