A Positive Force for HIV Health
“For lots of guys, we are the first people, other than their doctor, that they talk to about their new diagnosis,” says Everett Holden, a treatment advocacy coordinator with Positive Force, a program of San Francisco AIDS Foundation and Stop AIDS Project.
A model for sharing knowledge and building community, Positive Force has been providing peer support and HIV health education for nearly 14 years. To see what makes this program unique—and learn what its members say is their number-one need—check out the profile excerpted below and available at sfaf.org.
…Designed by and for HIV-positive gay, bisexual, and transgender men, Positive Force blends peer support, education, and community connection into its five core services: the weekend-long PLUS educational seminars; twice-monthly physician-led discussions on staying well with HIV (nicknamed “The Doctor Is In”); quarterly presentations by experts on the latest in HIV research; one-on-one peer-based counseling sessions; and “Urban Adventures,” monthly social get-togethers that range from bowling nights to scavenger hunts.
“What we’ve designed with Positive Force,” explains program manager Justin Jones, “is a program you can enter in a ‘low-threshold’ way, such as going to a social event—have some fun, go home—all the way up to working really intensively on your personal health and wellness goals with a peer counselor.” Men can choose the level of engagement that feels comfortable as they begin navigating San Francisco’s resources for people living with HIV….