November 2012


Six out of 10 young people with HIV don't know they have it

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that six out of 10 young people with HIV don’t know they carry the virus.

"This is our future generation and the bottom line is that every month, 1,000 youth are becoming infected with HIV," CDC Director Thomas Frieden told reporters during a national telebriefing. "Given everything we know about HIV, and how to prevent it after more than 30 years of fighting the disease, it's just unacceptable that young people are becoming infected at such high rates."

To read the full Journal Sentinel story, click here.

To support prevention programs at ARCW, click here.

HIV in 2012: Hidden And Unfamiliar - A Community Unites with ARCW for World AIDS Day

Art and public policy usually find their home in struggles and protests over funding and censorship. On December 1, World AIDS Day, art and one of its key institutions in Wisconsin, is serving as the facilitator for some provocative conversation about health care and public policy.

The Milwaukee Art Museum plays host to a unique World AIDS Day commemoration as it unveils Taryn Simon’s photograph, Live HIV, on display for the first time as part of the Milwaukee Art Museum’s permanent collection. An acquisition made possible by Joseph Pabst and the Johnson & Pabst LGBT Humanity Fund at the Greater Milwaukee Foundation, the photograph was part of Simon’s exhibition “An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar.” In the photograph Simon takes the viewer into the HIV research lab at Harvard Medical School to see the virus up close in a way no one gets to see it. The inclusion of this photograph in her American index gives rise to a statement that HIV is itself growing hidden and unfamiliar.

The event on Saturday, December 1 is designed to change that. Partnering with ARCW, the celebration will kick off with a provocative look at government policy and explore the opportunity for strategic responses to the epidemic from government on the heels of the latest elections. Ronald Johnson, Vice President of Policy and Advocacy for AIDS United, Washington DC will speak as will ARCW President and Chief Executive Officer Michael Gifford.

The event begins at 2 pm in the Lubar Auditorium of the Milwaukee Art Museum. A question and answer period will follow these presentations and then guests will be invited to see the Simon photograph.

Pabst, who was honored in 2010 as the Philanthropist of the Year by AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin, made the art museum’s acquisition of this photograph possible on the terms that the museum display the photograph on World AIDS Day for the next five years.

“I was moved when I saw this work on view in the Taryn Simon: Photographs and Texts exhibition. To me, it is a stunning reminder of the millions of people who live with HIV, and those who have lost their battle,” Pabst said. “The Johnson & Pabst LGBT Humanity Fund was created to improve our community through arts and education, and I can think of no better way to highlight the continuing epidemic of HIV and AIDS than by publicly showcasing artwork that reminds us that our work is not done.”

The event is free and open to the public.

Waiting Lists Hamper Access to Care Throughout the Country

As the promise of health is finally achievable for people with HIV, they unfortunately confront waiting lists denying them the care they need in several states across the country. In the last year alone, waiting lists for medical care in Louisiana and dental care in Ohio have served as a barrier to comprehensive, integrated care which is the key to HIV patients achieving good health. In Florida, North Carolina, South Dakota and Virginia, HIV continues to destroy the immune systems of patients who are put on wait lists for HIV medications. In Minneapolis and Philadelphia people with HIV are being put on waiting lists, left homeless and with a major barrier to being able to maintain their health.

In Wisconsin the number of patients the number of patients turning to ARCW for care continues to significantly increase and with hundreds of people with HIV not yet in care the AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin is being called on to do more.

“To sustain Wisconsin’s proud tradition of ensuring that everyone with HIV seeking care receives it, we need to raise an additional $400,000 in private donations this year,” said Mike Gifford, ARCW President and Chief Executive Officer.

With 94% of ARCW patients living in poverty and 31% without insurance:

  • ARCW medical care, dental services, mental health therapy and social services will need to care for a record 3,500 people with HIV and provide unfettered access to Wisconsin’s leading physicians, dentists and therapists to assure health and life.
  • The ARCW medication assistance program will need to provide a record $200,000 to support all of our patients receiving their prescriptions to assure health and life.
  • ARCW housing programs will have to provide more than 70,000 nights of safe and warm housing to help end homelessness among people with HIV and to assure health and life.

“ARCW donors should be proud of the outstanding HIV care and treatment that is available in our state without waiting lists. Your help supports the best care possible and achieves outcomes among the best in the nation,” Gifford said.

To make a secure, tax deductible year-end donation to the ARCW annual fund, click here.

Record Number of Restaurants on Board for 2012 Jolly Holly Folly

On Wednesday, December 12, Jolly Holly Folly, the ARCW annual winter fundraiser, will set a new record with 30 restaurants participating in the festive holiday event. Long known as one of southeastern Wisconsin’s premier holiday parties, Jolly Holly Folly offers a unique experience. Guests not only enjoy signature tastings from some of the Milwaukee area’s most popular restaurants, but also an exclusive performance by the Milwaukee Rep. This year, the Rep will present a period-perfect adaptation of Jane Austen’s well-loved novel, Sense and Sensibility, a heartwarming, humorous tale of two sisters struggling to find love and deal with family challenges.

Held at the InterContinental Milwaukee, the first part of Jolly Holly Folly offers complimentary beer and wine, a cash bar and an exciting raffle in addition to great cuisine.

“We are excited by the response we have received from area restaurants. Because of the growth of this event, now in its 17th year, Jolly Holly Folly 2012 will be on both the first and second floors of the InterContinental Milwaukee,” Mary Hartwig, ARCW Director of Special Events said. “Our guests are going to have an uncommon opportunity to sample cuisine from Milwaukee’s most popular restaurants and then enjoy world class theater entertainment.”

Participating restaurants to date include: American Euros, Arin Bert, Bella Caffe, Bistro 333, Blue’s Egg, Bosley on Brady, Cempazuchi, ChopHouse, Classy Girl Cupcakes, COA, Cubanitas, Eat Cake, Firefly Urban Bar & Grill, Indulge, INdustri Café, Kil@wat, La Perla, Maggiano’s, Mason Street Grill, Maxie’s Southern Comfort, Metro Restaurant & Lounge, Mia Famiglia, Molly Cool’s, Purple Door Ice Cream, Riverfront Pizzeria, Riviera Maya, Rumpus Room, RuYi, the Soup Market, Transfer Pizza and Via Downer.

The event’s presenting sponsor is MillerCoors. Additional sponsors include Avita Drugs Pharmacy, the ARCW Pharmacy, Graphicolor, Barefoot Wine, the Milwaukee Rep and Marcus Hotels and Resorts.

Tickets are $80 each. Guests can receive a 10% discount on purchase of 4 or more tickets.

Theater seating is limited. Purchase your tickets today online or call 414.225.1570.

Planned Giving Challenge Grant Announced for Allies of ARCW

For every donor notifying ARCW that it is named in their will or as a beneficiary of their life insurance policy, trust vehicle or 401K plan, a $1,000 gift will be made to ARCW from longtime ally William Reinicker. The challenge grant was announced by Dan Mueller, ARCW vice president and chief development officer on November 15, National Philanthropy Day.

“Patients with HIV live longer in Wisconsin than anywhere else in the country. With this knowledge and with the fact that we still wait in hope for a cure, we need to encourage donors to think about their estate planning as a way to make personal choices that will protect their interests and assure ARCW’s strength in the fight against AIDS into the future,” Mueller said.

To qualify for this challenge grant, donors must submit a copy of their estate plan naming ARCW as a beneficiary. The deadline for the challenge grant is March 15, 2013. The challenge grant will be capped off at $10,000.

ARCW is working with attorney Bradley Kalscheur on amplifying gift planning at ARCW. Kalscheur, a partner in the Wealth Planning Services practice group at Michael Best & Friedrich is a volunteer for ARCW. Together he and Mueller intend to raise the profile of the effectiveness of gift planning for the both the donor and ARCW.

“In the past few years, an infusion of $240,000, directed from estates, has advanced the mission of ARCW through the most challenging economy of our lives,” Mueller said.

“Many people think it is complicated and expensive to work with an attorney on an estate plan,” Kalscheur said. "But at upcoming seminars, we will be educating ARCW donors, including same sex couples, to learn how their estate plans can help them make personal choices, like reducing estate taxes and making charitable gifts.”

Bill Reinicker is allocating this challenge grant in memory of Norma Reinicker Reilly, Bill’s beloved sister, who passed away March 15, 2012. Like her brother, Norma Reilly was a Red Ribbon Patron of ARCW (a donor whose cumulative giving reaches a minimum of $10,000). Both Bill and Norma were named ARCW Philanthropists of the Year in 2001.

Donors interested in participating in the challenge grant need to email, fax or mail into ARCW either a full copy of their estate plan or the portion of the plan that names the AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin as a beneficiary and the challenge grant will be activated. These donors will be the guests of ARCW and celebrated at an upcoming luncheon in 2013.

To Submit By Mail:
AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin
Attn: Allies Challenge Grant
820 N. Plankinton Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53203

To Submit By Fax:
Send to 414-273-2357

Please send to the Attention of: Allies Challenge Grant

To Submit By Email

For the Person Who Has It All: A Different Holiday Gift Catalogue

The holidays are upon us and so that yearly challenge begins - what are you going to get that person on your list who has everything? How about a gift that is unique and thoughtful? What about a gift that gives life? This holiday season, ARCW is presenting its first-ever Holiday Gift Catalogue, full of ideas at price points for all budgets. 

The new ARCW online Holiday Gift Catalogue offers the opportunity to give a unique and meaningful gift this holiday season,” said Kathy Fargo, ARCW Director of Major Gifts. “This is the perfect gift to honor someone who has everything they need or who does not want more stuff,” she said.

Fargo created the catalogue with Jennifer Weber, who heads up online giving for ARCW. They noted the following gift items as terrific gift giving opportunities:

  • Provide a holiday dinner for a family affected by HIV for $35
  • Help ensure patients in need have access to emergency housing assistance for $100
  • Underwrite an uninsured patient’s dental appointment for $200

To make a gift in honor of a friend or loved one, simply select a gift amount and enter payment and honoree information. ARCW will send a special holiday card to your honoree notifying them of your gift and how that gift will help a person living with HIV.

“Our hope is to provide a service to donors looking for a unique way to make a gift to someone they care about while also closing some of the many gaps in funding that have to be covered every year in order to provide expert HIV care to ARCW patients ,” Fargo said.

Large-scale gifts, complete with naming opportunities also are available. To view the catalogue, click here.

AIDS Walk A Resounding Success - Honorary Chair Ryan Braun, 2,255 Walkers Raise $361,392 to support HIV Prevention, Care and Treatment in Wisconsin

On October 1, 2,255 people from across Wisconsin and Milwaukee Brewer and National League MVP Ryan Braun gathered at the Summerfest grounds for AIDS Walk Wisconsin, raising $361,392 for HIV prevention, care and treatment services. The 23rd annual event raised 23% more than it did last year.

“HIV is a brutal disease, but together we are stronger,” ARCW President and Chief Executive Officer Mike Gifford told the crowd. “Even though new HIV infections are up 19%, and 94% of people with HIV live in poverty, with the support you have raised for the fight against AIDS today, ARCW will be able to keep its promise of assuring everyone with HIV has access to the care and treatment they need to stay alive. Thanks to everyone who has registered and donated to AIDS Walk Wisconsin, we will continue welcome everyone with HIV to the ARCW Medical Center, regardless of their ability to pay.”

All money raised by AIDS Walk Wisconsin stays in the state and helps to fund the ARCW Medical Center. As the largest and most comprehensive provider of HIV health care in Wisconsin, the ARCW Medical Center provides integrated medical, dental and mental health; pharmacy services; and vital social services to make sure patients have the best chance for successful HIV treatment outcomes.

During AIDS Walk Wisconsin’s opening ceremonies, Ryan Braun interacted with walkers and volunteers, graciously signing autographs and listening to stories from people impacted by HIV. As special guest speaker, Braun provided the crowd with a powerful, heartfelt message about the importance of keeping the fight against AIDS strong.

“AIDS is impacting too many of our friends, family members and neighbors,” said Braun. “I am excited and happy to be here today with you and to raise awareness and generate support to strengthen the fight against AIDS.”

In addition to hearing from Braun, Walkers heard from long-term HIV survivor and this year’s AIDS Walk Wisconsin Official Artist, Lon Michels. As someone living with HIV, Lon has overcome a tremendous amount of challenges including temporary blindness.

“Thank you to everyone for being here and supporting AIDS Walk Wisconsin and ARCW. Without groups like ARCW and without your support many people, including me, would not be here.”

WISN anchor Portia Young, a long-time supporter of the fight against AIDS, served as emcee.

MillerCoors was the presenting sponsor for AIDS Walk Wisconsin 2012. The AIDS Walk Wisconsin Grand Sponsor was the Brewers Community Foundation. Other sponsors included: SC Johnson, the ARCW Pharmacy, the Green Bay Packers, American Family Insurance, WEYCO Group, Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare, Arketype, Starbucks, Pete’s Fruit Market, Culligan, P&N Promotions, Milwaukee County Parks, Central Bark, and Behavior Works. AIDS Walk Wisconsin media partners included: Quest, Wisconsin Gazette, Marcus Theaters, Clear Channel Outdoor, WISN TV/DT, and the Onion.

Produced by ARCW, AIDS Walk Wisconsin is the largest fundraising event supporting the fight against AIDS in the state. All proceeds generated by the Walk stay in Wisconsin and help ensure everyone with HIV has access to high quality health care, regardless of their ability to pay. AIDS Walk Wisconsin proceeds also support aggressive HIV prevention strategies aimed to reducing the number of new infections.

Ally Profile: The Racine Community Foundation - Making It's Mark

Since 1975, the Racine Community Foundation has worked to improve the quality of life for the citizens of Racine by providing opportunities for charitable giving and by managing and distributing donors’ funds. After a period of seven years the Racine Community Foundation is back supporting the fight against HIV in southeastern Wisconsin.

The foundation’s $10,000 grant to ARCW is currently providing support for 42 patients from Racine County who receive their HIV health care through ARCW. The 2012 grant is focusing on funding two goals. The first is a retention to care plan administered by a team of providers, nurses, case managers and patient service representatives to keep HIV patients coming in for their care. The second goal is to move 80% of this cohort of 42 Racine County ARCW patients to an undetectable rate. When an HIV patient is undetectable, they still have HIV in their system, but it has been suppressed to a very low level, the healthiest benchmark for anyone confronting HIV/AIDS. Currently this cohort of patients is at 76%.

“The AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin is an important organization for our very diverse community,” comments Mary Beth Mikrut, Racine Community Foundation Executive Director. “They address issues that cannot be ignored and they do it well.”

The Racine Community Foundation administers funds for a variety of donors, concentrating their efforts on each community’s specific needs and adapting as new challenges arise. In the case of Donor Advised Funds, contributions are made to non-profit organizations both within and outside of Racine County, based on the recommendations of the donor.

“We always want to stay attuned to the community’s needs,” explains Mikrut. “Our Board of Directors recently revised the mission of the foundation as well as its strategy. It is very important for us to be a vital player in supporting non-profits and enhancing the community so everyone, no matter what the issue, can get help.”

For more information regarding the Racine Community Foundation, please call 262-632-8474 or visit them online at or on Facebook,

5 Reasons To Make A Year-End Donation to ARCW:

  1. Your gift will ensure access to HIV medical care and services in Wisconsin is immediate.
  2. Ninety three (93) cents of every dollar of revenue goes directly to HIV services.
  3. Take advantage of the existing tax benefit.
  4. With nine offices around Wisconsin, one gift to ARCW can strengthen the fight against HIV statewide.
  5. Name ARCW as a beneficiary in your will of on your life insurance policy and leverage a $1,000 gift for ARCW. (see Planned Giving Challenge Grant)

Mark Your Calendars

Nov 28 – Pink Hat Party, a benefit for ARCW; This Is It, Milwaukee

Dec 1 – World AIDS Day Commemoration; Milwaukee Art Museum Lubar Auditorium 2 pm.

Dec 1 – “Church Diary: Letting Go of Sacred Secrets and Private Wounds", a benefit for ARCW; Destiny Youth Plaza, 7210 N. 76th St., Milwaukee, 7 pm.

Dec 12 – Jolly Holly Folly; InterContinental Hotel Milwaukee & Milwaukee Rep, 5 pm

February 27, 2013 – The Remedy, a benefit for ARCW; Nell’s City Grill,  La Crosse

April 27, 2013 – Make A Promise Gala


Patient Testimonials

"I always thought that HIV would be my biggest worry,” said Melody Rose. “Thankfully ARCW has treated my HIV well, and has helped me fight all of the other challenges of living with HIV.”

See other testimonials