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Annual DINING BY DESIGN Event Raises Funds for HIV/AIDS Advocacy Efforts

May 23, 2019

DINING BY DESIGN, an annual fundraiser hosted by Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS (DIFFA), recently commemorated its 10th year of co-location with the Architectural Digest Design Show. The five-day event, held in March at Pier 92 in New York, gathered local and international brands and designers to create a showcase of vibrant dining vignettes and to raise awareness for HIV/AIDs.

The 2019 show honored DIFFA’s 35th anniversary and was expected to raise nearly $1 million for its cause.

“The event started in Kanas City as a tabletop design event as a means for providing décor for a fundraiser,” says Dawn Roberson, DIFFA’s executive director. “It was adopted by many of the DIFFA chapters across the country and has morphed and evolved into the design extravaganza it is today.”

3 Charitable Initiatives in Design

DINING BY DESIGN 2019 brought together over 40,000 guests to experience an array of dining installations by more than 30 designers, architects, manufacturers and brands. Participants transformed raw spaces into immersive exhibits throughout a 30,000-square-foot space into a showcase of dynamic dining environments that represented a unique concept.

The installations featured the latest products and designs on the market for eventgoers to view and dine in.

Among the designers included was the Black Artists + Designers Guild, Sheila Bridges, Mikel Welch, Stacy Garcia Home, Damour Drake presents Kingston Design Connection, Joshua David Home, INC Architecture & Design, Lucinda Loya Interiors, Patrick Mele for Benjamin Moore, Roric Tobin for Modern Luxury, David Scott Interiors for Roche Bobois and Stonehill Taylor for Ultrafabrics.

“DIFFA works with local New York City design schools to allow three student teams each year to participate and design a space as well,” adds Roberson. The tables are on exhibition throughout the five-day event and guests are seated inside the tables for a gala dinner on the final day.

In addition to the design installations, DINING BY DESIGN featured a silent auction, the proceeds of which were donated to DIFFA’s mission.

“DIFFA is a grant-making organization that provides support to AIDS service organizations who provide testing, education and treatment to those affected by or at-risk for HIV/AIDS,” she says. “It is unique in its ability to quickly provide unrestricted funds to groups in need to help sustain their programs and everyday operations.”

The nonprofit also hosts a summer event to help further its cause known as PICNIC BY DESIGN, which highlights design as well. The celebration, held in September in New York, brings together designers, manufacturers and artists whose work is bid on by DIFFA supporters. Learn more about DIFFA at

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About the author
Adrian Schley | Associate Editor

Adrian Schley has been writing for interiors+sources magazine since March of 2018. She earned her BA in journalism at the University of Iowa, where she also studied English.