September Damien Center Update

September 2021


September 15, 2021



Holiday Assistance

The holidays are just around the corner and the Damien Center is here to assist any clients in need. During the months of November and December, Damien Center works with outside organizations to ensure that clients receive holiday food boxes and holiday gifts for both individuals and families. Holiday Assistance is not guaranteed and is based on the support Damien receives from community partners. For clients in need of assistance, they can contact their Care Team to fill out an application. The deadline for November assistance is October 1st and the deadline for December assistance is November 15.

Building A Future

Building a Future is a series of life-skills classes that are presented by both Damien staff and outside organizations and individuals. The purpose of Building a Future is to provide clients with resources to overcome barriers. The classes are held on the first and third Tuesday of the month from 1:00 – 2:00 pm in the Damien Center board room. The final Building a Future class for this year will be held on September 21st.

On September 21, 2021, Indiana Legal Services will be leading a class on Indiana Tenant and Renter Laws. The session will go over what rights tenants have and how to address conflicts or concerns with property owners. This session will also provide an insight into the COVID Rent Moratorium and how tenants should proceed with any further actions. For clients who are interested in attending the class, they can reach out to their Care Team or Annie Nelson ([email protected]).

Building a Future classes will be following COVID protocol and will request that all attendees wear masks and social distance during the session. With the uprising of the Delta variant cases, there will be a maximum of 5 unvaccinated clients allowed, but there are no attendance restrictions on vaccinated clients.


Damien Center is kicking off its Family Services programming with a trunk-or-treat night on October 9th from 5:30 – 7:00 pm. During the event, clients will be able to meet our Family Services Specialist, Diana Owens, and learn about all the programming planned for 2022. There will be Grab n’ Go concessions, To Go Crafts, community resources and so much more! All clients who access services at Damien Center are invited to join in the fun! For more information on Trunk-or-Treat, please reach out to Diana Owens ([email protected]).

Positive Action for Youth Program

The Client Enrichment Department will be adding a new youth leadership program this fall for HIV positive and high-risk HIV negative youth ages 16-24. The Positive Action for Youth program will engage HIV positive and high-risk HIV negative individuals on an annual basis. Through this program, participants gain leadership skills, connect with others in the community, and lead Community Engagement and Cultural projects designed to improve confidence and reduce stigma within the community surrounding youth and HIV.

Positive Action for Youth participants will go on to become Peer Mentors, Youth Community Advisory Group members, and mentors to incoming Positive Action for Youth participants. All youth will be linked to appropriate medical, supportive, and preventive services, improving their individual health outcomes. Youth participants will also play a strong role in creating a Youth-Friendly HIV Medical Clinic at Damien Cares, impacting community health outcomes for youth for years to come.

Shoe Drive

The Housing Department has partnered with an outside organization to receive shoes for clients in need. There will be a variety of shoes, both men’s and women’s sizes ranging from 7-10 (women’s) and 9-14 (men’s) and will include non-slip work shoes. The process for requesting shoes will be announced once Damien Center has a date of when we will receive them. Clients in need should stay tuned for communication from their Care Teams.

Damien Center COVID-19 Updates

Due to the rise in cases in the Indianapolis area, Damien Center has taken extra precautions to keep all clients and staff safe. Damien Center will be utilizing telehealth appointments as much as possible to keep the number of people in the building to a minimum. At this time, some departments will also be working on a rotating schedule to minimize the number of people in the building at a time. This includes Care Coordinators and Medical Case Managers. Clients can still contact their care teams via e-mail and phone, but Damien Center asks for clients to remember that walk-in appointments may not be available due to staff rotations.

As a reminder to all Damien Center community members, all persons are required to wear masks when in the building to protect themselves and others. Damien Center also asks that clients stay home if they are sick and to call for a telehealth appointment or reschedule once their symptoms are gone.

COVID Boosters for the Immunocompromised

The CDC is recommending that all immunocompromised people get a COVID booster shot to prevent further spread of COVID-19 and the Delta variant. Booster shots are available for immunocompromised people at various sites in the city. For any client wanting to get their booster shot, they can call 211 or contact their Care Teams for a list of locations.

Client Advisory Board Update

Client Advisory Board will go on a temporary hiatus until 2022. All clients who are interested in being a part Client Advisory Board and want to receive updates should contact Annie Nelson at ([email protected]).

CAFE Updates

Damien Center has opened a satellite location on the eastside of Indianapolis to provide more services to our clients in that community. CAFE is located at 8902 E. 38th Street and offers testing services along with a multitude of other services for eastside clients. The hours and highlighted services are below:

Where are we located?

Damien Center @ CAFE
8902 E 38th St.
Indianapolis, IN 46226

p. 317 632 0123


Monday - 9a - 4p
Tuesday - 9a - 4p*
Wednesday - 9a - 4p
Thursday - 9a - 4p*
Friday - 9a - 12p

CAFE offers food distribution every week on Mondays. The food distribution is first come, first served starting at 1:00 pm. There are not any restrictions and identification is not required.

After almost a year of being virtual, CAFE is now offering the Partner Senior Care program in person. The program is a free senior adult day program that operates Monday-Thursday

9a-2p and offers a place for Far Eastside seniors to gather with other seniors in the community to establish important relationships by socializing and having fun. Continued education is also part of the partner place program on topics such as health concerns within the senior community that focus on physical, mental, emotional, and sexual health.

Daily activities include a social hour, nutritional lunch offered by Central Indiana Council on Aging (CICOA), arts and craft, guest speakers, modified exercise, line dancing, or offsite trip (some trips may cost, and fees will be communicated with participants in advance of the trip).

To participate in this program, participants must be 55+, available to attend daily, and a Far Eastside resident. Space is limited; however, participants may be accepted on a rolling basis.

For further information and to receive a calendar of events, contact Jacquita Pettigrew at (317) 890-3288 Ext 132 ([email protected]).

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