About AFC

Code of ethics

AFC is built on a foundation of widely shared values. These values include:

  • Commitment to our mission
  • Confidentiality and empowerment through self-determination
  • Respect for the worth and dignity of all individuals, especially those living with HIV/AIDS
  • Accountability to all stakeholders
  • Inclusiveness and social justice
  • Respect for pluralism and diversity
  • Transparency, integrity and honesty
  • Responsible stewardship of human and financial resources
  • Commitment to excellence and to maintaining the public trust

These values lead directly to the Code of Ethics that follows. The values inform and guide the way we — AFC’s Board members, staff, and volunteers — should perform our responsibilities when acting on behalf of the organization.


Personal and professional integrity

All staff, Board members and volunteers of AFC act with honesty, integrity and openness in our dealings as representatives of the organization. AFC promotes a working environment that values respect, fairness and integrity, and we put the needs of the organization in front of personal gain and interest.


AFC has a clearly stated mission and purpose, approved by the Board of Directors, in pursuit of the public good.

The AIDS Foundation of Chicago mobilizes communities to create equity and justice for people living with and vulnerable to HIV and related chronic diseases.

All of our programs support our mission and all who work for, or on behalf of, the organization understand and are loyal to that mission and purpose. The mission is responsive to the constituency and communities served by the organization and of value to society at large.


AFC has a Board of Directors that is responsible for setting the mission and strategic direction of the organization and overseeing the finances, operations, and policies of the organization. The Board of Directors:

  • Ensures that its Board members have the requisite skills and experience to carry out their duties and that all members understand and fulfill their governance duties acting for the benefit of the organization and its public purpose.
  • Has a conflict of interest policy that ensures that any conflicts of interest or the appearance thereof are avoided or appropriately managed through disclosure or other means.
  • Is responsible for the hiring, firing, and regular review of the performance of the President/CEO, and ensures that the compensation of the President/CEO is reasonable and appropriate. This is a specific responsibility of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors.
  • Ensures that the President/CEO and appropriate staff provide the Board of Directors with timely and comprehensive information so that the Board of Directors can effectively carry out its duties.
  • Ensures that AFC conducts all transactions and dealings with integrity and honesty.
  • Ensures that we promote working relationships with Board members, staff, volunteers, and program beneficiaries that are based on mutual respect, fairness and openness.
  • Ensures that AFC is fair and inclusive in its hiring and promotion policies and practices for all Board, staff and volunteer positions.
  • Ensures that AFC’s policies are in writing, clearly articulated and officially adopted.
  • Ensures that our resources are responsibly and prudently managed.
  • Ensures that AFC has the capacity to carry out its programs effectively.

Legal compliance

The AIDS Foundation of Chicago is committed to complying with all applicable laws and regulations.

Responsible stewardship

AFC manages its funds responsibly and prudently. We operate only in ways that are consistent with our mission, strategic vision, and values; our respect for our donors; and our goals of ending HIV/AIDS and improving the lives of those currently living with HIV/AIDS.

Our stewardship includes the following considerations:

  • We invest an adequate amount on administrative needs to ensure effective accounting systems, internal controls, competent staff, and other expenditures critical to professional management.
  • We compensate staff, and any others who may receive compensation, reasonably and appropriately.
  • We recognize the variety of factors that affect fundraising costs.
  • We do not accumulate excessive operating funds.
  • We ensure that all spending practices and policies are fair, reasonable, and appropriate to fulfill the mission of the organization.
  • All financial reports are factually accurate and complete in all material respects.
  • We allocate funds through processes that are fair, reasonable, and responsive to community needs.

Openness and disclosure

AFC provides comprehensive and timely information to the public, the media, and all stakeholders and is responsive in a timely manner to reasonable requests for information. All information about AFC will fully and honestly reflect the policies and practices of the organization. Basic informational data about the organization, such as the annual report and audited financial statements, will be posted on our website or otherwise available to the public. All solicitation materials accurately represent AFC’s policies and practices and will respect the dignity of program beneficiaries. All financial, organizational, and program reports will be complete and accurate in all material respects.

Ongoing quality insurance and quality improvement

AFC continuously monitors program effectiveness and has mechanisms to incorporate lessons learned into future programs. We are responsive to changes in our field of activity and responsive to the needs of our constituencies.

Inclusiveness and diversity

The AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC) has a policy of promoting inclusiveness; the diversity among our staff, Board, and volunteers enriches our programmatic effectiveness. AFC takes meaningful steps to promote inclusiveness in our hiring, retention, promotion, Board recruitment, and constituencies served.


The AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC) is truthful in our solicitation materials. We respect the privacy concerns of individual donors and expend funds consistent with donor intent. AFC discloses important and relevant information to potential donors.

In raising funds from public and private sources, AFC will respect the rights of donors, as follows:

  • To be informed of our mission, the way the resources will be used and AFC’s capacity to use donations effectively for donors’ intended purposes.
  • To be informed of the identity of those serving on AFC’s governing Board and to expect the Board to exercise prudent judgment in its stewardship responsibilities.
  • To have access to AFC’s most recent financial reports.
  • To be assured their gifts will be used for the purposes for which they were given.
  • To receive appropriate acknowledgement and recognition on a timely basis.
  • To be assured that information about their donations is handled with respect and with confidentiality to the extent provided by the law.
  • To expect that all relationships between AFC and donors will be professional in nature.
  • To be informed whether those seeking donations are volunteers, employees of the organizations or hired solicitors.
  • To have the opportunity for their names to be deleted from mailing lists that AFC may share.
  • To feel free to ask questions when making a donation and to receive prompt, truthful and forthright answers.

These ten points are taken from A Donor Bill of Rights, developed by the American Association of Fund Raising Counsel, the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy, the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, and the Association of Fundraising Professionals, and endorsed by Independent Sector.