Each year, Dining Out For Life serves up a chance to support local restaurants and raise funds for AIDS service organizations in your community. Although cities, municipalities and states across the country hold their Dining Out For Life fundraisers on different dates, more than 13 of them have designated Thursday, April 29, as the day you can enjoy a meal to help end HIV/AIDS.

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To find out when your city is hosting the event—and which eateries are participating—visit DiningOutForLife.com. Ordinarily, the fundraiser is straightforward: You dine out at a participating restaurant, and a portion of the proceeds of your meal goes to a local HIV/AIDS organization.

But last year, the COVID-19 pandemic complicated the process—especially since many eateries were themselves shuttered. Fortunately, advocates and volunteers were fast to pivot, offering takeout orders and more flexible donation options and extending the duration of the event.

Whether you are Dining In or Taking Out this year, it has never been easier to support your local restaurants and Dining...

Posted by Dining Out For Life on Monday, April 26, 2021

Fort Lauderdale and surrounding Broward County is just one area hosting Dining Out for Life on April 29. Funds will go to Broward House. On its website, the HIV organization explains how COVID-19 has affected the annual Dining Out for Life event:

In a typical year, our restaurant partners would donate an average of 30% of sales on April 29, and Broward House would have an ambassador at each restaurant location to share our mission with diners to gain donations. Of course, this year is different. We are not asking for a percentage of sales. We know this was a difficult year. We instead will promote restaurants and ask for donations from the community to reach our fundraising goals. Visit our website www.browardhouse.org/DOFL2021 to learn more and dine in (or take out) all month long in April. All donations will support HIV prevention and direct client care services, provided to more than 6,000 people in Broward each year.

Other cities and states participating April 29 include:

  • Central Florida
  • Connecticut
  • Charleston, South Carolina
  • Fort Lauderdale and Broward County, Florida
  • Greater Palm Springs, California
  • Hampton Roads, Virginia
  • Minnesota
  • Philadelphia
  • San Diego
  • San Francisco
  • St. Louis
  • Tampa Bay
  • Western Kentucky and Southern Indiana

Also on the horizon are Chicago on May 16; Albany, on June 10; Indianapolis on June 17; Houston on July 24; Portland, Oregon, on September 30; and Western New York on October 12.

According to DiningOutForLife.com, the event has raised over $4.5 million for more than 50 local HIV organizations. More than 2,400 restaurants have participated. It is sponsored nationally by Subaru. Celebrity participants have included fashion designer and advocate Mondo Guerra, who is also living with HIV.

This year, in the Twin Cities, about 70 businesses are involved in the event, with the proceeds going to the Aliveness Project. As KARE11 reports, the HIV nonprofit serves about 2,000 people living with HIV, and Minnesota reported 40 new cases of HIV in the first three months of 2021.

Because of the COVID-19–related shutdowns this time last year, many locales rescheduled their spring Dining Out For Life events in the fall, while others, such as New York City, canceled the event and instead are encouraging folks to donate to HIV causes and to order takeout out from participating restaurants to support those businesses.

Be sure to visit DiningOutForLife.com for details about your city. You can also search social media using the hashtags #dineoutendhiv and #diningoutforlife. It’s your chance to enjoy a meal that’s totally worth the calories!

In related HIV fundraising news, see “Elton John’s Pre-Oscar Party Raises $3M to End HIV” and mark your calendar for May 16 as “Six Cities Join Blockbuster Virtual Fundraiser ‘AIDS Walk: Live at Home.’