Mission Statement The Tidewater AIDS Community Taskforce is a private non-profit corporation whose purpose is to support and maintain the best quality of life for persons infected and affected by the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), and to reduce the overall incidence of HIV infection by providing education and information to the general public.
Vision Statement As stated in our mission statement, “The Tidewater AIDS Crisis Taskforce is a private non-profit corporation whose purpose is to support and maintain the best quality of life for persons infected and affected by the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), and to reduce the overall incidence of HIV infection by providing education and information to the general public.” TACT is devoted and committed to providing an umbrella of services to the region that not only include direct HIV/AIDS services, but related social support programs as may be needed to fulfill it primary mission. The Tidewater AIDS Community Taskforce (TACT) is the primary AIDS Service Organization of the Hampton Roads area. Since its inception in 1983, it has provided support to those living with HIV/AIDS without cost to the consumer. As the lead agency for the Virginia Department of Health Grants in HIV/AIDS Education for South Hampton Roads TACT has been the vanguard in this region. As lead agency of the Hampton Roads AIDS Services Coalition (HRASC), TACT is aware of the services available in the region; the challenges inherent in providing them; and the needs of the individual affected populations. Our programs of Client Services, Education/Prevention targeting the HIV Positive community as well as our Virginia Department of Health program serving men having sex with men have both been innovative and to date have reached a segment of the Eastern Virginia targeted populations that otherwise would have been underserved.
History By 1983, a new disease had started creeping into the lives of our nation, especially in the Tidewater area. ARC (AIDS Related Complex), as it was known then, or HTLV-III, was beginning to claim precious lives in our own backyard. A community effort was needed to try and stop the spread of this relentless killer. In response to this community problem, The AIDS Fund, Inc known to everyone as TACT came into being from a small group of friends helping friends. At first, we were primarily helping those that were dying all too quickly and trying to fill the ever-changing needs as fast as they arose. This growing need in the community that soon spread beyond this small group of very special people was constantly creating new challenges that were met head-on by TACT.
Many who were infected were treated as pariahs by friends and even their own families. TACT found itself becoming the last hope for many persons that had been abandoned by everyone around them. We became the last hope and for many the last human touch in their lives. The spread of AIDS was accompanied by ignorance that also created heartache in the lives of those living with AIDS. In Norfolk, this small group of friends who founded TACT would get together and would be constantly looking for ways to help those that were being infected on a daily basis. When the AIDS Fund, Inc was started, it was located in a small house on 41st Street near Old Dominion University and the old Oar House restaurant club.
During those early days, TACT consisted mostly of volunteers and 5 employees. We soon outgrew that location and moved to Duke Street in downtown Norfolk having grown from a staff of 5 with less than 100 clients to a staff of 18 with over 300 clients. As time passed and the reality of AIDS set in, we soon found that we had outgrown our offices at Duke Street.
Therefore, in 1995 we moved to our present location at 9229 Granby Street in Oceanview where we now find ourselves with a staff of 42 and well over 1000 clients of which over 600 are actively case managed. Since then we have tried to get the word out to the people of the area that they needed to protect themselves and to be always prepared.
TACT has offered educational information and speakers to anyone that has been willing to listen. To this day, we continue to strive to dispel the myths and reinforce the truths about HIV/AIDS.
In July 2003, TACT expanded it’s services to Hampton and Newport News. TACT opened a fully operational satellite office with professional staff in its continuing efforts to fulfill it’s mission of serving all persons living with HIV/AIDS within the region.
Over the years we have added new services that include street outreach, prevention case management, rental assistance , emergency housing, food and a meals program, medication and dental assistance and much more. These services that help to improve the lives of those living with HIV/AIDS are vital to fighting this killer. We continue to meet the challenge on a daily basis.
Since 1983 we have continued to grow, molding and forming an agency that responds to the ever –changing needs of the community, no matter the gender, sexuality, race or circumstances of persons in need. We look to the future to that day, when we all can say that TACT is no longer needed because HIV/AIDS has been conquered, until that day, TACT will continue to serve anyone that has a need with compassion and unwavering understanding at no cost to them.