UCSF Kicks Off Celebration of 35 Years of HIV/AIDS Care with AIDS Walk San Francisco

By Niall Kavanagh

Monica Gandhi speaks during the 2017 AIDS Walk San Francisco event
UCSF is looking to raise $150,000 in this year’s AIDS Walk San Francisco. Photo by Noah Berger

AIDS Walk San Francisco, one of the biggest and longest running HIV/AIDS fundraising events in Northern California, returns to Golden Gate Park on Sunday, July 15.

UC San Francisco, the leading provider of HIV care in Northern California, has played a major role in its success since it start three decades ago.

UCSF participants in the 2017 AIDS Walk San Francisco pose for a group photo

Join UCSF in AIDS Walk San Francisco

UCSF is looking to raise $150,000 in the 10K fundraising trek to raise money for Bay Area AIDS service organizations.

“AIDS Walk is where UCSF comes together in response to the epidemic,” said Paul Volberding, MD, director of the UCSF AIDS Research Institute (ARI) and longtime AIDS Walk participant. “We always have a major presence.”

Since 1987, AIDS Walk San Francisco has raised more than $90 million for HIV programs and services in the Bay Area. Last year, UCSF helped AIDS Walk to raise $1.8 million for local organizations including Ward 86, UCSF’s HIV clinic at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital (ZSFG), a leader in models of HIV care since the beginning of the epidemic.

“The importance of AIDS Walk to UCSF cannot be overstated,” said Monica Gandhi, MD, MPH, medical director of Ward 86 and longtime walker. “With their support, we launched Golden Compass, an innovative program to care for people living with HIV over the age of 50 years.”

Funds raised in AIDS Walk San Francisco’s 2018 event will continue to benefit dozens of AIDS organizations in the Bay Area, including primary beneficiaries ACRIA, Positive Resource Center and Project Open Hand.

This year also marks a special anniversary for UCSF: 35 years of HIV care at Ward 86. To acknowledge this landmark, UCSF/ZSFG is planning a special celebration to coincide with World AIDS Day in December.

More than a dozen teams across all UCSF campus locations are participating in or supporting AIDS Walk San Francisco. All those who donate $25 will receive a commemorative UCSF T-shirt. UCSF is looking to raise $150,000 this year.

Mary-Lawrence Hicks, NP, deputy clinic director of Ward 86 and captain of Team Ward 86 has already reached a quarter of her $1,000 personal fundraising goal. “We’ve come far but still have a long way to go,” she said. “The HIV/AIDS community is counting on us.”

June 21 AIDS Walk Kick-Off Event: Women and HIV

As a kick-off event to rally and register the UCSF community for AIDS Walk San Francisco, the UCSF AIDS Walk Steering Committee will host a lunchtime learning session, “The San Francisco Model 2.0: What We Learn from Caring for Women with HIV,” featuring Edward Machtinger, MD, director of the Women’s HIV Program at UCSF. The special event is slated for Thursday, June 21, from noon to 1 p.m., in the Nursing Mezzanine, UCSF School of Nursing on the Parnassus campus.

For more campus news and resources, visit Pulse of UCSF.