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During an era when many institutions were questioning their positions on HIV/AIDS, the Alexian Brothers forged ahead to promote care instead of debate. In the early days of AIDS, it wasn't popular for many religious institutions to associate themselves with the issues related to and populations affected by the disease. Yet, in this unsympathetic environment, the Alexian Brothers made a decision to create an entire program of care for those suffering and in need.
Guided by the Alexian Brothers' vision of providing care, compassion, and dignity for the marginalized person, the vision of Bonaventure House in Chicago is to transform the lives of people with HIV/AIDS within a compassionate, supportive community.
Bonaventure House opened its doors in March of 1989, serving as a facility that was neither hospital nor hospice: it was a home for people with AIDS and a resource center that provided counseling and an array of supportive services.
The facility comprises 35 private rooms, complete food service, a conference room, a TV room, a chapel, a learning center, 24/7 staffing, and administrative offices. These resources, joined with a supportive, family atmosphere, and a strong sense of community, serve the spiritual and practical needs of the residents. Bonaventure House's location in Chicago's busy Lakeview neighborhood offers residents a wide variety of opportunities for medical and recovery services.
- Have a diagnosis of HIV/AIDS
- Be homeless or at risk of homelessness
- Be under the care of a primary care physician, with a negative TB skin test or chest x-ray
- Be willing to abide by the policies of the Resident Handbook, including the Tier System, and be willing to contribute a social service fee (30% of income and/or benefits - having no income is not a barrier to admission)
- Be capable of living in a diverse, transitional, congregate community setting
- Be interested in and capable of returning to independent living in the community within 2 years.
- If in recovery, have 45-90 days of substantiated clean time, and be committed to remaining alcohol and drug free
- If diagnosed with mental health issues, be under the care of a psychiatrist - and, if indicated, see a counselor and/or adhere to psychotropic medication regimen
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