Provider of HIV/AIDS services — Living Room — expanding to northwest Georgia region

By Maria Saporta

Living Room Inc., the leading provider of supportive housing services for people living with HIV/AIDS in Georgia, is expanding its service area to include the cities of Rome and Dalton.

Living Room, which has been serving metro Atlanta for 16 years, wanted to fill a need for a part of the state that was underserved. That 20-county area in northwest Georgia will now have access to services and programs that include emergency financial assistance and long-term rental assistance.

The expansion is being funded through a grant from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs and its program — Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS.

“We’re very excited to have this opportunity to offer our services in Northwest Georgia,” said Twilynn Jourdain, Living Room’s Director of Client Services. “Our goal is to help clients living with HIV/AIDS access and maintain permanent, safe and affordable housing, which is essential for their mental and physical health, as well as their spiritual well-being. Everyone deserves to live their best life, and we are happy that we will support our clients in doing just that.”

Long-time Dalton resident Gilsia Hernandez, who recently joined Living Room’s staff, will serve the region as the Special Needs Housing Assistance Program (SNHAP) case manager.

“Being part of this community for so many years gives extra meaning to being able to serve here,” Hernandez said. “The SNHAP Program in northwest Georgia will fill in the gap in services offered to HIV positive individuals and families that are facing the double challenges of homelessness and unemployment.”

Living Room will be operating out of the Living Bridge Center in Dalton.

Jeff Vollman, HIV Director at the center is looking forward to the partnership.

“Safe, affordable and supportive housing is crucial to our shared clients well-being and serves as the foundation to more stability in their lives and an increased quality of life,” Vollman said. “We look forward to working with and watching the Living Room program in north Georgia grow and prosper over the coming years.”

Maria Saporta, Editor, is a longtime Atlanta business, civic and urban affairs journalist with a deep knowledge of our city, our region and state.  Since 2008, she has written a weekly column and news stories for the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Prior to that, she spent 27 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, becoming its business columnist in 1991. Maria received her Master’s degree in urban studies from Georgia State and her Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University. Maria was born in Atlanta to European parents and has two young adult children.

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