Fred Says Announces Annual Giving on World AIDS Day

Fred Plush Toy

Fred Says annual tradition as part of its annual giving is to distribute Fred plush toys to children for the holidays in the U.S., Nigeria and South Africa.

On Dec. 1, World AIDS Day, Fred Says announced it is giving nearly $200,000 to youth-serving organizations in the United States and around the world.

Fred Says was founded in 2012 by Dr. Robert Garofalo and named after his dog Fred. The 501(c)(3) non-profit supports domestic and international organizations that serve LGBTQ youth and young people living with and/or impacted by HIV. 

Dr. Garofalo is the Chief of the Division of Adolescent & Young Adult Medicine at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago and a Professor of Pediatrics at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. He adopted Fred following his own cancer and HIV diagnosis and created the non-profit to honor the joy, peace, and healing Fred brought to his life. 

In 2023, Fred Says celebrated its 10th year of giving. To date, the organization has raised and distributed $1 million to support adolescents and young adults affected by HIV. 

“It’s really rather amazing that on World AIDS Day, this little grassroots charity will celebrate a decade of charitable giving,” said Garofalo. “I hope these monies will help organizations provide the care and services that young people need to thrive and live their best authentic lives.”

In sum, $190,000 will be gifted to 13 youth-serving organizations to support pet therapy and adoption programs, specialized mental health and drop-in services, transportation and housing assistance, peer-led support for HIV+ youth, and the development of educational materials about sexual health, wellness, and HIV-prevention, with an emphasis on minoritized transgender youth, their parents, and caregivers. 

The 2023 Fred Says award recipients are:

  • Magic City Acceptance Academy, Birmingham, AL 
  • One Roof Chicago, Chicago, IL
  • Human Rights Campaign, Washington, D.C.
  • University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria
  • Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Chicago, IL
  • Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Lagos, Nigeria
  • Youth Outlook Services, Chicago, IL
  • Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center, Los Angeles, CA
  • Advocates for Youth, Washington, D.C.
  • Desmond Tutu Health Foundation, Cape Town, South Africa
  • Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA
  • VIVENT Health/TPAN, Chicago, IL
  • Initiative for the Advancement of Improved Health & Development, Ibadan, Nigeria

Fred Says will also continue its tradition of distributing 500 Fred plush toys to children for the holidays in Chicago and Birmingham as well as in Nigeria and South Africa.

“The generous gifts that Fred Says has given to us has ensured access to sexual and reproductive health services for young people who otherwise would not have had them,” said Linda-Gail Bekker, Chief Executive Office of the Desmond Tutu Health Foundation in Cape Town. “This is a wonderful investment in those young lives and in the future of South Africa.”

You can learn more about Fred Says at Contact: [email protected]

Contact Information:
Robert Garofalo
[email protected]

Original Source: Fred Says Announces Annual Giving on World AIDS Day