HIV Prevention Program
Description of Program
What is the intervention/program/project?
The prevention program is composed of three core elements.
The organization participates in a yearly summit for First Nations people living with HIV. Aboriginal people living with HIV travel from remote communities in Ontario to attend. The summits have resulted in the creation of an Ontario First Nations HIV education circle and other groups. The summits continue to build support for HIV prevention in rural areas and are gaining support from community leadership.
The agency also receives letters and emails from communities requesting trainings on Two-Spiritedness and HIV. The organization sends trainers to rural and remote communities whenever possible to respond to the requests, if the community is able to provide funding for travel expenses.
In 2005-2006, resources were produced for a campaign called: “Wise practice, leading an extraordinary life: An HIV prevention campaign with Two-Spirited men.” The website is still accessible, and the report is still online.
What is the goal/objective of the intervention/program/project?
The long term goal is to prevent the transmission of HIV as well as other STIs.
Why was the program originally developed?
The program was developed to address HIV prevention for First Nations Two-Spirited people using culturally-appropriate imagery and resources.
Before the program began, the prevention messaging centered around having safe sex to protect oneself. As the epidemic moved into injection drug use, the message expanded to protecting oneself and others.
How did you develop this intervention/program/project?
The program began by asking Two Spirited people what images made sense to them, and what images were unappealing. The imagery that made the most sense to Two Spirited men communicated respect for elders and traditional people. This formed a basis for program development.
Organization2-Spirited People of the 1st Nations
- Resource development
- Indigenous peoples
- Sexual minorities
Ontario, Virtual (website resources)
Project ResourcesResources available online at http://www.2spirits.com/
Resources for Program
- Program staff
- Individuals in communities who can provide the best guidance
- Compensation for communities and people in communities who participate in initiatives.
- Resources from “Wise practice, leading an extraordinary life: An HIV prevention campaign with Two-Spirited men.”
DurationIndefinite, funding permitting
Process monitoring or evaluation
- OCHART evaluation (number of workshops, how many attended, etc.)
Audience/client feedback and satisfaction
- Informal feedback based on discussions about whether goals/objectives reached, what obstacles were faced, and how they were dealt with.
Evaluation TermsAudience/client feedback and satisfaction, Process monitoring or evaluation
- There is an element of mentorship in the summit process. When leaders step back to mentor new people, momentum and creativity are maintained.
- Spiritual helpers (elders or people with traditional knowledge of cultures), language and ceremonies are essential. The connection around culture and ceremony is woven into prevention initiatives.
- Encouraging people to publish results in Aboriginal journals on HIV/AIDS can be important.
- Funding challenges limit the amount of work that can be accomplished. Other commitments can prevent agencies from applying for additional funding to do more prevention work despite a critical need for more programming.
- It is difficult for rural/remote First Nations communities to access funding.