Bergen Family Center receives grant to expand HIV/AIDS services

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Aids RibbonThe Ryan White/HIV/AIDS Program of Bergen Family Center will now be offering additional services and outreach to HIV-infected people in northern New Jersey. BFC was awarded a federal grant administered through the City of Paterson, Department of Human Services, Ryan White Grants Division. The grant allows BFC to provide those infected and affected by HIV/AIDS with mental health services, legal advocacy, outreach and early intervention.

Early Intervention Services will ensure that those who are HIV-positive receive access to care and follow-up support. The Outreach/Early Intervention Service provider coordinates community outreach efforts, educates about HIV across all populations, advocates testing among identified at-risk populations, navigates the newly diagnosed toward medical care, and provides the appropriate resources to the client. BFC coordinates services with the Bergen County Health Department and numerous agencies throughout Bergen and Passaic counties.

Individual mental health therapy and group counseling services are provided at BFC and Buddies of NJ in Hackensack, as well as at Friends for Life in Oradell. Legal services are provided to help clients secure benefits, access medical care and obtain other services necessary to maintain their independence. Mental health services are offered to provide emotional support to help ensure individuals remain engaged in medical care and to assist with moving forward in life.

BFC believes that, through education, testing and reducing the stigma of HIV/AIDS, the spread of the virus can be stopped. BFC also advocates for HIV testing to become a part of everyone’s annual health check. To schedule a free and confidential HIV test, please call or text Ryan Mion, an Outreach/EIS worker, at (201) 563-3819. “Stop wondering. Take the test and know your status in under 20 minutes,” says Mion.

BFC recognizes and understands the impact HIV/AIDS has on infected individuals, their family members, partners, friends, and survivors. The goal at BFC is to enhance the quality of life for people living with HIV/AIDS, ensure they are receiving medical care, and support a positive self-image and healthy attitude. For more information about BFC’s Ryan White Services, contact Paula Tenebruso at (201) 342-9200, ext. 20.

BFC has locations in Hackensack and Englewood and is Bergen County’s oldest, continuously operating family service agency since 1898. In addition to its Ryan White Services, Bergen Family Center offers day care/educational services for children, support services for adolescents, the elderly and families, and general counseling.

Aids RibbonThe Ryan White/HIV/AIDS Program of Bergen Family Center will now be offering additional services and outreach to HIV-infected people in northern New Jersey. BFC was awarded a federal grant administered through the City of Paterson, Department of Human Services, Ryan White Grants Division. The grant allows BFC to provide those infected and affected by HIV/AIDS with mental health services, legal advocacy, outreach and early intervention.