Legacy Cares Executive Director Brooke Henderson

New monthly event sends Legacy Cares supporters out to dinner

DAVID TAFFET | Senior Staff Writer

With the dawn of a new year, Legacy Cares this week announced dates for its new Dinner for a Cause, a series of dinner events created to thank volunteers and volunteer organizations while supporting Legacy’s many programs, and other special events.

Legacy Cottage

“We wanted to get back to sit-down dinners and acknowledge our volunteers who have given so much to us over the years,” explained Legacy Cares CEO Brooke Henderson.

The first dinner is at Ebb & Flow in Deep Ellum at 7 p.m. on January 11. Tickets are $66 and available at the Legacy Cares Eventbrite page.

Three other dinners are planned throughout the year: at Snooze on Feb. 16, at Salum on May 23 and at Hamburger Mary’s on July 27.

The Ebb & Flow event is the kickoff dinner, but a drag show will accompany the events at Snooze and Hamburger Mary’s. Dinner at Salum will be a more upscale evening.

Legacy officials also announced the dates and locations for three other Legacy fundraisers this week: The Battle of Fire and Ice takes place at S4 on April 6; the Pride Variety Show, also at S4, is on June 15. and Legacy Angels’ PositiviTea Brunch will be on Sept. 22 at Hal and Dragon in the Design District.

For more than 25 years, Legacy Cares has been on the front lines of fighting HIV.

The organization was originally called Legacy Counseling Center, and counseling remains one of its major focuses. Legacy is one of the first stops for many people who have been newly diagnosed with HIV.

Counselors there work with clients to help them understand that a positive test is not a death sentence, and that with medication, HIV is controllable and can you may lead a normal life.

The counseling center also works with those struggling with substance abuse issues.

Soon after the founding of the counseling center, Legacy established a hospice facility for those with HIV/AIDS who were in their final days. The facility was called Founders Cottage. The cottage is still operating today, but as drugs have come on the market to control HIV, people who once had catastrophic illnesses are living longer, fuller lives. So the cottage has transformed from a hospice where people went to die into a rehab facility where people come to live.

As clients who may have gone through extended illnesses transition back to independent living, staff assist with independent living skills and even help them find affordable housing.

Because finding housing became an issue as people began living with HIV longer, Legacy Cares created Homebase for Housing. Its website, HomebaseForHousing.org, is available for anyone to use and includes a search for affordable apartment options based on your budget and rental history.

The program offers a variety of options including housing programs and resources and emergency shelters and also links to regional housing authorities.

Related to that program is the Master Leasing program, a supportive housing program for individuals and families impacted by an HIV/AIDS diagnosis. Clients work to overcome the barriers that lead to homelessness and instead find the path to self-sufficiency through individualized case management.

Legacy also offers the Grace Project, which focuses on helping women living with HIV break through the stigma of accessing healthcare. The Grace Project Conference, held in Dallas each year, is the nation’s largest conference for women living with HIV/AIDS. Attendees learn about health issues related to their diagnosis during discussion groups and workshops with professionals and participate in team-building exercises led by local leaders.

For tickets to Dinner with a Cause, visit the Legacy Cares EventBrite page. For more information on the organization itself, visit LegacyCares.org.