Founded in 1988, Broward House helps individuals with HIV/AIDS and their families by assisting with housing, mental health services, substance abuse treatment, testing and other programs.
“The agency embraces a responsibility to be a leader in the community. This leadership is actualized through prevention, education, and service in order to reduce the number of individuals becoming infected by HIV, increasing the number of HIV-plus individuals receiving care, supporting needed services, and reducing stigma in our community,” reads Broward House’s website.
But during its Spirit of Hope Grand Reception, Broward House will honor four individuals who have helped it carry out its mission: Mark Budwig, Marta Gonzalez, Marie Brown Hayes and Ken Rapkin. The reception will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 30 at 6:30 p.m. at B Ocean Resort in Fort Lauderdale.
“We look at people who not only do things for Broward House but also have some impact in the community for what they do,” said Rob Bullock, Broward House’s director of development.
“Their support makes a difference to our clients every day.”
Mark Budwig, owner and president of S.MARK Graphics Florida
“Mark has been a long-time board member. He’s also helped raise the profile of Broward House and helped to make sure people know about the work we do. He’s certainly helped us that way,” Bullock said.
Marta Gonzalez, advocate
“Marta was a case worker here at Broward House. She’s probably come into contact with more of our clients than anyone has. Any clients she’s touched have loved Marta. She’s also educated and worked to reduce the stigma of HIV/AIDS. She’s been a voice for many,” Bullock said.
Marie Brown Hayes, program director for the Comprehensive Family AIDS Program
“When we’ve needed to refer women [we couldn’t help] Marie and her programs have been there for years. She’s been a great resource. If she couldn’t help someone, we would do the exact same thing. She’s really been someone we can rely on. She’s been a true partner,” Bullock said.
Ken Rapkin, executive director of the Campbell Foundation
“[Ken is the leader of an organization that has] been recognized in their work for raising funds and for providing funds for drug research. They’re behind the scenes supporting the work we do. It’s really a quiet organization. They do supporting research projects to find new drugs. The money they give to us is used to provide services to our clients that aren’t covered by grants,” Bullock said.
The deadline to purchase tickets [$100 per individual] is Aug. 26 at 5 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at browardhouse.org/events/upcoming-events.
Bullock added that B Ocean has “been a tremendous partner” and the event will be held in the hotel’s newly-renovated ballroom overlooking the beach. The night’s festivities will include a small plate dinner, dessert and a silent auction.