January 5, 1987. The New York Times ran a feature article entitled, “For Homeless With AIDS, A New Home.” The world was introduced to Bailey-Holt House, the nation’s first congregate residence for people living with HIV/AIDS, which welcomed its first five residents the preceding December.
Over the last 30 years, Bailey-Holt House has provided a home for more than a thousand people living with HIV/AIDS. Bailey House donors have been an integral part of shaping its history and helping its residents heal, grow and thrive. In recognition of this landmark anniversary, we are launching our 30x30x30 Campaign, which aims to raise $30,000 by June 30th to celebrate 30 years of transforming lives at Bailey-Holt House. We hope you’ll join us by considering making a 30th anniversary contribution to Bailey House, perhaps in honor or memory of someone personally meaningful to you.
When Bailey-Holt House first opened, we provided a space where people could live with joy, dignity and peace. At that time, the average length of stay for residents was four months, and almost all who moved in died while living with us. As people began living longer with advances in treatment and as HIV became a manageable chronic illness, supportive environments providing long-term housing and care like Bailey-Holt House grew in importance. Today, the average length of stay for our residents is five and a half years, with some living at the residence as long as 15 years or more. Many clients are ultimately able to move into more independent housing when they leave Bailey-Holt House as a result of the specialized care and tools we provide while they live there. One of Bailey-Holt House’s longest-term residents, Viola, who is legally blind and recently relocated to more independent housing for seniors, had this to say about her experience:
I have a great-granddaughter, and I don’t want her to see me as a drug addict who has AIDS. I want her to see me as a strong, willful person who does not make excuses for the mistakes that she made. Bailey House has helped me do that.
When you make a contribution in support of Bailey-Holt House, you are directly impacting the lives of the residents who live there. While government support covers some of the costs of operating the facility, it is not enough. One important component that is entirely paid for by individual donors is the meals program. Since the building had formerly been a hotel, resident rooms do not have kitchens, just living/sleeping space and bathrooms. Residents receive three meals a day, seven days a week, in a group dining room that overlooks the Hudson River. The average cost of a meal at Bailey-Holt House is $5. A gift of $30 covers six meals, $50 would cover ten meals and $100 would feed 20 people for dinner.
Where else can your donation have such a sustaining impact on the health and well-being of others in need?
We hope that we can count on your participation in our 30x30x30 Campaign to celebrate this special anniversary and continue to help our residents thrive!