November 11, 2005
On Monday, Palm Springs' Desert AIDS Project (DAP) broke ground on an 80-unit development designed to provide affordable housing for people with HIV/AIDS. The nonprofit partnered with about a dozen local and state organizations to finance the $10.5 million project, which should be completed by the end of next year.
A groundbreaking will also be held in two months or so on a neighboring 22,000-square-foot medical facility, said Riverside County Supervisor Roy Wilson.
George Puddephatt, DAP's director of social services and case management, said there is a strong need for affordable housing for HIV/AIDS patients in the Coachella Valley. DAP serves 2,400 clients, 35 percent of whom make less than $10,000 a year. Many are on Social Security and have incomes of less than $800 a month. Puddephatt said the new six-building Vista Sunrise apartments, where rents will range from $200 to $250 a month, will serve this community.
DAP Housing Specialist David Maud said the facility is also needed because of the stigma still attached to the disease. "They do need a little extra support. There is still some discrimination," agreed Bob Frazier, housing case manager at DAP.
Vista Sunrise will have an office on site and counseling services, Puddephatt said.