Gala brings in funds for HIV prevention, education

By Beth Wasson

WICHITA - Positive Directions, Inc. (PDI) received some positive cash flow from their Winter Fire and Ice Gala held on Jan. 19. The event, including silent and live auctions, raised $8,000 for PDI’s community outreach. That program visits with students and local groups and provides much needed information about HIV and how to protect against it.
    Abode hosted the event that began with food and drinks and entertainment from Dangling Dames aerialists and Phlox fire dancers. Local celebrity and Wichita Eagle movie reviewer Rod Pocowatchit emceed the evening. Offerings from Two Olives/Olive Tree catering and the Bagatelle Bakery provided refreshments for the crowd of over 150.
    The festivities continued afterwards at Club XY in Old Town. Spirit AeroSystems, Club XY, Abode Venue, Douglas Design District, B Young Salon, and private donations helped cover expenses. PDI hopes the Gala becomes an annual event.
    Positive Directions, Inc. began 26 years ago as the Care Coordination Team, an AIDS-service organization providing comfort and companionship for those dying from AIDS. It grew into the largest HIV/AIDS organization in Kansas, offering case management, education, prevention and food services.
    But today, the organization focuses on education and prevention only. PDI offers rapid HIV testing and gives out condoms both at its office and at clubs around the city. All PDI services are free to the public.  
    Upcoming fundraisers include Bitchy Bingo at Club XY on Feb. 22 and this spring’s AIDS Walk scheduled for May 19. For more information, visit or stop by the office at 416 S. Commerce St., Suite 108. l

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Marcia McCoy, Ph.D.