The AIDS Funding Collaborative (AFC) strengthens the community's response to HIV/AIDS as a public/private partnership providing coordination, leadership, advocacy, and funding in Greater Cleveland.
Structure and Role
The AFC is comprised of representatives of our funding partners, designated organizations, and community-at-large members. In carrying out its work, the AFC is mindful of core values and strategic commitments that reflect its members' intentions regarding the role, responsibilities, and range of activities most suited to fulfilling the AFC's mission.
The AFC’s traditional role has been to provide a structure for allocating and distributing community-based funding from local public and private funding partners. Since 2005, when the AFC hired its first full-time staff person, the AFC has engaged in an expanded range of activities. The AFC aims not only to continue to fill gaps in funding for essential HIV/AIDS-related programs and services in our region, but also to raise awareness about the impact of HIV/AIDS in our community, and encourage support of coordinated prevention efforts and high quality services for those affected by and at-risk for HIV/AIDS.
The AFC participates in community advisory and planning groups and works in collaboration with agencies whose activities and interests overlap with those related to the AFC’s mission. The AFC also leads community initiatives such as the AIDS United AmeriCorps program and hosts educational forums and briefings as topics for such events emerge.
The AFC was established in the Fall of 1994 in response to a recommendation by the Citizens' Committee on HIV/AIDS to develop a "method of allocating and distributing community-based funding from local government, health departments, and the private sector." For its first ten years, the AFC was housed at United Way of Greater Cleveland and carried out its work with generous in-kind staff support from United Way and The Cleveland Foundation, through the volunteer efforts of its members, and using staff consultants.
The AFC was one of the original eight national Community Partnerships of AIDS United and continues to be one of 15 Community Partnerships, raising, leveraging, and investing resources in local HIV/AIDS programs. Community Partnerships like the AFC also serve as conveners, technical assistance providers, community builders, and policy advocates.
In 2004, the AFC began a strategic planning process to address questions about its future direction, structure, governance, management, and grantmaking. That process resulted in a decision to expand the AFC's role to include not only grantmaking, but also advocacy and community leadership activities. In order to carry out this new level of programming, the AFC formed a new partnership with The Center for Community Solutions in September 2005 aimed at raising the visibility of HIV/AIDS in Greater Cleveland and attracting new forms of support to the cause of prevention, intervention, and service. In November 2005 the AFC hired its first full-time staff. The AFC is located within The Center for Community Solutions, which provides fiscal and administrative oversight.
Since its inception, the AFC has secured over $8 million to support HIV/AIDS-related services, activities, and prevention efforts in the Greater Cleveland area.
The Center for Community Solutions provides strategic leadership and organizes community resources to improve health, social, and economic conditions through applied demographic research, nonpartisan policy analysis and advocacy, and communication.