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Programs and Services

Peer Navigators and Elder Peer Advocate: One on One Support

Our Peer Navigators can provide one on one support for you on your journey with HIV, helping you achieve your goals and reach full physical and emotional wellbeing. They can support you whether you have been recently diagnosed or have been living with HIV for some time. They offer a knowledgeable, supportive environment in which you can explore your concerns and fears about living with HIV. They can also connect you to other programs, help you with referrals to other services and provide information on many aspects of living with HIV.

We also provide support for families and partners. We understand that it is important that everyone surrounding the person living with HIV has support. We offer a safe space for couples to explore issues raised by HIV such as disclosure, HIV prevention for partners and accessing treatments.

Our Peer Elder Advocate supports our older clients’ social inclusion and connections to their community, and advocates with them in supporting their access to community supports and health and other services. They also support older people who are recently diagnosed with HIV.

Our Peer Navigators and Peer Elder Advocate can arrange to meet with you by phone or video call. You can book in a catch up by registering here.

Our staff take your privacy and confidentiality very seriously. You can read our Privacy Policy here. For more information call our Peer Support Manager on 03 9863 8777, register below or speak to your doctor or nurse.

Meet our Peer Navigators

Anth,  Sarah or Emil can support you as you navigate your HIV journey, whether you have been recently diagnosed or have been living with HIV for some time. They offer a knowledgeable, supportive environment in which you can explore your concerns and fears about living with HIV. They can also connect you to other programs, help you with referrals to other services and provide information on many aspects of living with HIV.

Ask your doctor or health care worker about how to set a time to chat with either Anth, Sarah or Emil.

Hi I’m Anth and I’m a heterosexual man living with HIV.

I’ve been positive for a long time but I’m happy and healthy and I expect to live until I’m old.
For many lonely years I kept my status secret until one day, I decided to start telling my close friends and family. They loved and supported me despite my HIV diagnosis. Over time, I began to accept myself and stop caring what others thought of me.
I’m married with two kids. My partner knew my HIV status before she became my girlfriend and she still got involved with me. Thanks to medical treatment and care, we knew we could safely have a family without passing HIV on.

 

 Hi, I’m Sarah and I’m a queer woman who has been living with HIV since 2008.

My HIV journey has been a rocky one, especially for the first five years of my diagnosis. It took me a long time to accept HIV into my life and find my sexuality and sense of self again. I had issues with drug use and mental health problems. I was socially isolated and really felt so low.

Now HIV is such a small part of my daily life. I love, laugh and cry just like everyone else. I’m in a relationship with a person who is HIV negative, and thriving physically, spiritually and emotionally.

Throughout my own journey, I’ve had first-hand experience of the power of peer support. It saved my life. I owe a lot to my community and feel so passionate about sharing my experience with others who are on a similar journey. We all deserve to live a life free from stigma and discrimination and we can achieve this together.

Hi, I’m Emil and I was diagnosed with HIV in my early 20s.

I have been involved with Australia’s HIV community before being diagnosed. Due to this, my experience since my diagnosis has been met with a lot of support and understanding. This experience has taught me the importance of being connected with our community.

I’ve done a lot of work and have gathered a lot of support to be at a place now where I draw immense power as a person of colour living with HIV. Living with HIV has also taught me a lot about human resilience, the importance of community, and having access to quality care. I’m living proof that our country’s HIV response can help support people to lead a long and quality-driven life.

I’m looking forward to connecting with you and introducing you to the rest of your community.  I hope by connecting with you that I’m able to help support you get to where you need to be with your HIV journey.

Meet our Elder Peer Advocate

Hi, I’m Richard and I’m a gay man with a culturally diverse background living with HIV.

I have been living with HIV for a while which is one of the reasons I moved to Australia about 12 years ago, for a chance at survival. Like everyone else, I’m still surviving and continue to work towards achieving quality health outcomes for myself and hopefully for you.

HIV hasn’t been a limitation for me and I have continued to work towards achieving my goals. My goal for this role is to provide peer support and to share experiences with members of the community.

In my role as Elder Peer Advocate I will provide peer support to older and vulnerable members of our community who are sometimes  left behind.