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Jun 26 2024

Celebrating a New Chapter in Community Health

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A Ribbon-Cutting Event to Remember

On Friday, June 21st at 10am the Positive Resource Connection, in partnership with Alliance Health Centers, marked a significant milestone in health services for northeast Indiana, especially the southeast side of Fort Wayne and for the LGBTQ+ community. The red ribbon-cutting ceremony at our office building, 525 Oxford Street, celebrated not only the unveiling of a new primary care clinic but also the dedication of a vibrant new mural, symbolizing hope and unity in our community.

Group cuts red ribbon with large scissors

Left to right: Dr. Nikki King (CEO, Alliance Health Centers), Kris Wise, MSW, LCSW (Clinician, BRAVE Alliance), Mark Boxell, NP (Alliance Health Centers), Dr. Eric Shoemaker (Medical Director, Alliance Health Centers), Jeff Markley (Executive Director, Positive Resource Connection), Theopolis Smith III (Phresh Laundry), Lyndy Bazille (AfroPlump)

Expanding Medical Services in Northeast Indiana

The Northeast Indiana Positive Resource Connection, formerly the AIDS Task Force, has been in existence since 1985. Over the past 39 years, our agency has progressed from providing compassionate and dignified end-of-life care to becoming a cornerstone of life-empowering and life-saving resources. Our services have expanded to include HIV case management, linkage to care, housing assistance, food provisions, transportation, mental health counseling, HIV and Hep C testing, education and street outreach, STI testing, Hep C case management, and PrEP navigation services. Now, with the addition of primary healthcare provided by Alliance Health Centers, we are taking a monumental step forward in our mission to prevent new cases of HIV, Hep C, and STIs, and to advance a compassionate and stigma-free community response.

Open now, the new primary care clinic is located within the Positive Resource Connection building at 525 Oxford Street. Owned and operated by Alliance Health Centers and deemed The Brave Alliance Health Center, the clinic offers full-service primary care, family medicine, mental health services and more.

“Together as The Brave Alliance Health Center, we can strengthen the care we provide our entire community,” said Dr. Eric Shoemaker, medical director of Alliance Health Centers. “This clinic is open to all, and we look forward to continuing to break down barriers to quality healthcare as the Alliance footprint grows in Fort Wayne.”

In an effort to keep the clinic accessible, Alliance Health Centers offers a sliding-fee-scale discount for services (available to those who qualify). No one will be turned away for inability to pay.

“This partnership strengthens progress in addressing health and mental health inequities in Fort Wayne,” said Kris Wise, licensed clinical social worker at BRAVE Alliance. “Addressing the gaps and reducing barriers to access for the LGBTQ+ community, and other vulnerable people, changes the landscape immediately.”

A Tribute to Community and Art

Culminating Friday’s red ribbon ceremony was the dedication of a new mural, created and installed by talented local artists Theoplis Smith III (Phresh Laundry) and Lyndy Bazile (AfroPlump). Made possible through a grant from the Community Foundation of Greater Fort Wayne, the mural is a vibrant testament to the spirit and resilience of our community. Its unveiling adds a splash of color and a sense of pride to our building, the Oxford neighborhood and southeast Fort Wayne.

From Councilwoman Rohli Booker, 6th District: “I extend my gratitude to Positive Resource Connection and Alliance Health Centers for their partnership and dedication to creating this vital resource, and to the talented artists whose work will undoubtedly enrich the lives of those who visit. Integrating art into healing spaces is a testament to the power of creativity in fostering wellbeing and community spirit. With this opening, we reaffirm our commitment to building a community, together, where everyone has access to the care and support they deserve.”

A crowd of people gather outside a building's mural

The new mural is located on the east side of the Positive Resource Connection building.

Thank You to Our Community

Man stands at podium addressing crowd

Jeff Markley (Executive Director, Positive Resource Connection) addresses guests at the red ribbon-cutting ceremony.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to everyone who attended the event and to those who couldn’t make it but sent their well-wishes. “YOU are the compassionate and stigma-free community response we strive for,” said Jeff Markley, our executive director. “As we all know, the healthier every individual is in a community, the healthier the community is as a collective. So thank you!”

Your support and dedication have been the backbone of our 39 years of impactful work, and we are excited to embark on this new chapter together. This clinic represents a beacon of hope and health for our community, and we look forward to continuing to serve you with compassion and excellence.

Check out our Facebook page for more photos from Friday’s event!

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