Help needed for fire-displaced HIV researcher

Today is World AIDS Day but I wish to relay the need for a different kind of help.
Terra Sigillata has just learned that HIV/AIDS researcher Dr Sonia Napravnik and her daughter Sophia were among those whose apartments were destroyed by fire Wednesday night in Carrboro, NC. Sonia is a research assistant professor in the Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Wednesday night Sonia Napravnik’s apartment building caught on fire. Her
unit (3rd floor) was destroyed. It is presently unclear how much of her stuff will be retrievable but we are anticipating none or very little.
Sonia and Sophia were not home when the fire started but returned to see the building burn. Presently, she is staying in a local hotel (her choice), rather than staying with any of the many people who have offered her a place in there homes.
Many people have asked what to do for Sonia. She is still in shock and trying to figure out herself what to do. Right now she is still at the hotel and we are not aware of her future plans as to where she is going to stay for the immediate future. In the near future she will need get resettled and we would like to make that happen as quickly and painlessly as possible for Sonia.

Some readers in the infectious disease field may know Sonia and wish to help. The UNC research community is gathering donations of furniture, storage space, help moving, childcare assistance, etc. Monetary donations are also being accepted by mail to:

Dr Kristine B Patterson
Attn: Sonia & Sophia Fire Relief
Division of Infectious Diseases
CB# 7030, Bioinformatics Building
130 Mason Farm Road, 2nd Floor
Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27599-7030

For further information or to make suggestions on how to help, e-mail to or

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