David Riddell BGF CEO 23 March 2012_72 dpiA marked rise in clients seeking support has inspired the Bobby Goldsmith Foundation (BGF) to kickstart a new initiative that will see people raising vital funds for people living with HIV throughout the month of November while sharing a home-cooked meal with friends.

The aim behind the Big Baked Dinner is for friends to stay in for a night during the weeks leading up to World AIDS Day on December 1 and to share a meal with friends, and then donate money normally spent during a night out on the town. Those who wish to participate will have the option of a number of events to put on, such a cocktail party, a BBQ, a morning tea at work, a picnic in the park or a traditional dinner party.

BGF CEO David Riddell (pictured) said additional funding for medication and research was of great importance following recently released figures from the Kirby Institute showing a 24 per cent increased in new HIV cases in NSW for 2012.

“Due to this increase in new HIV infections, we have experienced a 15 per cent jump in the number of clients coming to us for support,” Riddell said.

“Funds are urgently needed so BGF can continue to provide the support needed by vulnerable people living with HIV. For this reason we have introduced … the Big Baked Dinner.”

The new initiative also has the support of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Business Association, its president Mark Haines said.

“This is … a great way for members of the community to help support those living with HIV. The Bobby Goldsmith Foundation works hard to obtain the medication people living with HIV on a low-income need to get better, return to work and live as normal a life as they can, and we should support this as much as possible,” Haines said.

“It’s only one night, and I’d like to call on our members and those whose lives have been affected by HIV to either host or attend a dinner, as well as donate, so that the Bobby Goldsmith Foundation can continue to provide much-needed support to those in need.”

Those looking to get involved can host a dinner, attend a dinner, or donate online, with the main focus of the events to be around having fun, sharing food and raising money, which can be done in the manner most appropriate for each event as decided by the hosts. Online donations are open to everyone.

INFO: Those looking to donate can visit here or here.

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