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Damien Center to Host Grande Masquerade Virtual Fundraising Event

If you’re looking for something fun to do at home this weekend – and support a great cause at the same time, Damien Center is hosting their annual Grande Masquerade – a virtual event full of entertainment, celebrities, great costumes and more!

Alan Witchey, President & CEO, Damien Center, tells us more about the big event:

Damien Center to Host Grande Masquerade Virtual Fundraising Event Oct. 24

Grande Masquerade Information:
• Grande Masquerade is one of Damien Center’s major fundraising events that has been held for more than 30 years. It has become one of Indianapolis’ premier fundraising events and helps raise vital funds to support the Center’s mission to end the spread of HIV in Indiana.
• This year, the event will be held virtually to continue the 33-year tradition while offering a safe alternative to large gatherings.
• The theme this year is Cabaret – Damien Center is encouraging guests to dress up in their best costumes, organize a party at home and join them for the virtual event that will feature entertainment from Indianapolis Men’s Chorus, Dance Kaleidoscope, Indianapolis Ballet, a costume parade, silent auction and more!
• The annual Parade of Costumes will be a virtual costume contest this year! From October 12 – October 26, individuals can tag us or direct message their costume entries. Two winners will be chosen and will receive prizes – one winner will be selected during the LIVE event and one will be voted on shortly after the event on Social media
• There will also be guest appearances from celebrities including Carson Kressley , Big Freedia, Wilson Cruz, Alex Newell, and Ross Matthews
• Access to the virtual event will be free with a recommended donation of $125 per attendee. Tickets can be reserved at: damien.org/tix.

Damien Center Background:

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Damien Center opened in 1987 and is Indianapolis’ oldest and largest AIDS service organization, leading the effort to prevent the spread of HIV.

Damien Center offers a spectrum of care through a one-stop-shop model that includes prevention services with access to free, confidential testing – and supportive and medical services for those already infected with HIV.

Our mission is to empower communities and persons affected by HIV/AIDS in the state of Indiana by being a leading resource, provider, and advocate for comprehensive HIV/AIDS care, prevention, education, and related services.

We have more than 12,000 people living with HIV/AIDS in Indiana and providing services for these individuals wouldn’t be possible without support from donors, community partners and fundraisers like Dining Out for Life.
95% of new HIV cases were linked to care within 30 days at Damien Center, nearly doubling the average rate for Central Indiana at 48%.

Damien Center’s medical patients also have a viral suppression rate of 91%, meaning they cannot sexually transmit HIV to another person, compared to the Central Indiana average of 58%.

Statistics:
• In 2017, a total of 12,635 persons were living with HIV/AIDS in Indiana. Most people living with HIV/AIDS in Indiana are concentrated in the urban areas of the state, however, rural areas can also be affected. The majority live in Central Indiana and the Indianapolis Metropolitan area.
• In 2016, new HIV infections were estimated to be at 39,782 in the United States.
• About 1.1 million people in the United States were living with HIV at the end of 2015, the most recent year this information was available. Of those people, around 15% (1 in 7) do not know they are infected.

Cabaret Grande Masquerade
Saturday, October 24
7:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Admission to the virtual event is free with a recommended tax-deductible donation of $125 per person

For more information visit:

damien.org/tix
Twitter: @DamienCenter
Facebook: www.facebook.com/thedamiencenter/

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