Issue:  Vol. 47 / No. 49 / 7 December 2017
 

Apothecarium pot club helps Maitri buy awning

San Francisco’s Apothecarium medical marijuana dispensary has donated $2,000 to buy an awning for medical pot smokers at Maitri, which provides hospice and short-term care for people living with HIV and AIDS.

Apothecarium co-owner Ryan Hudson in 2010

In an email blast Tuesday, March 20, the pot club announced they provided the funding this month to help Maitri purchase and install an automatic cover for their patio.

The outdoor space is where patients go to medicate “and, unfortunately, when the weather is inclement, they are forced to huddle in a corner for shelter,” the Apothecarium’s email says. “This creates a less than ideal situation for hospice patients who need to medicate, to say the least.”

According to the dispensary, donors to Maitri, which is at 401 Duboce Avenue, “didn’t feel comfortable with the idea of supporting a project that essentially encourages medical cannabis use.” (Maitri also has a patio for non-smokers.)

In an email, Maitri Executive Director Michael Smithwick said, “The Apothecarium is a generous supporter of Maitri’s residential care program for low-income San Franciscans with advanced AIDS … . Since many of our residents enjoy sitting outside in the open air, [the awning] will enable them to do so in shaded comfort on warm days and in dry comfort on wet days.”

He said his agency appreciates the support of the dispensary, donors, and volunteers “during these challenging times of federal funding cuts to organizations such as ours that provide vital services to people with AIDS.”

Laws governing medical cannabis dispensaries restrict the businesses from turning a profit, so before the Apothecarium opened last June, co-owner Ryan Hudson pledged to funnel any profits back into the community.

In December, the Apothecarium, located at 2095 Market Street, distributed $1,000 apiece to Maitri and Larkin Street Youth Services, and $500 to Pets Are Wonderful Support.

At the time, Hudson said they were still paying down construction and other start-up costs for the shop. Those expenses came to “something in the low six figures,” he said. He expected to have the expenses paid off this year.

— Seth Hemmelgarn, March 21, 2012 @ 7:19 pm PST
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