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HUD Archives: News Releases

HUD No. 98-37
Further Information:For Release
In the Washington, DC area: 202/708-1420Friday
Or contact your local HUD officeFebruary 6, 1998


WASHINGTON - The Department of Housing and Urban Development will host an off-Broadway play called "I Make Me A Promise" at 2 p.m. Monday (Feb. 9). The play was written and will be performed by formerly homeless children from New York City who have AIDS or live with a family member with AIDS.

"I Make Me a Promise" showcases five songs by Jonathan Larson, the late author of the Broadway hit, "Rent." Larson's parents and other family members, who see "Promise" as a tribute to Larson, will attend the HUD presentation. Sandra L. Thurman, director of the White House Office of National AIDS Policy, also will attend.

Cast members live in housing funded by HUD's Housing Opportunities for Persons With AIDS (HOPWA) program and run by Housing Works, a minority-controlled, non-profit provider of services to homeless men, women, and children living with HIV/AIDS. Some members of the cast have lost family members to AIDS and others are living with a parent with AIDS. Some are themselves HIV positive. In the play, the actors tell their own personal stories about how they live with AIDS.

The performance by the Housing Works Theater Project is sponsored by HUD's chapter of GLOBE (Gay, Lesbian or Bi Employees) and their supporters, along with HUD's Office of HIV/AIDS Housing to increase AIDS awareness among HUD employees.

"This play provides children of once-homeless families living with AIDS the vehicle to tell their real-life stories and expand a greater awareness of AIDS," HUD Secretary Andrew Cuomo said. "I invite HUD employees to attend the performance."

President Clinton's 1999 budget request proposes an increase in HUD's budget for HOPWA activities. The 1999 budget requests $225 million, an increase of 10 percent, or $21 million over the 1998 level of $204 million. The Center for Disease Control reported 69,101 new cases of AIDS in 1996 alone, with new infections in children rising dramatically.

Content Archived: January 20, 2009

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