A project of WASHINGTON REGIONAL ASSOCIATION OF GRANTMAKERS
The Washington AIDS Partnership brings together ideas, people, & resources to fight HIV/AIDS in the Greater Washington, DC region
What is the Washington AIDS Partnership?? We are a committed group of individuals and organizations striving to prevent new HIV infections and help those living with HIV/AIDS in the Greater Washington, DC region. Each year, the Partnership raises money from people like you to support the most effective, life-saving HIV programs in our region, including HIV testing, education to improve people's health, and connecting people living with HIV/AIDS to medical care. In 2013, the Partnership helped the local community provide more than 12,000 people with information about how to protect themselves from HIV/AIDS, preventing countless HIV infections. The Partnership also operates two other life-saving programs:
Youth Development: The Partnership recruits, trains, and mentors a team of 12 young people each year who commit to a year of full-time volunteer service at local HIV/AIDS organizations and health service providers in the Washington, DC region. In exchange for their service, team members receive a small living allowance. Each individual is a critical resource to the community. The 2012-2013 team conducted 1,891 HIV testing and counseling sessions, and provided life-saving HIV education to 4,679 individuals. Not only do they help people drastically improve their lives, but members grow immensely through a year of service:
Sarah: “I learn more from the women of N Street Village than I could ever teach them. At N Street Village, I am part of a diverse group of social workers, advocates, educators, nurses, doctors, and volunteers that serve the homeless and extremely low-income women of DC. I work in a trauma-informed care environment that uses an intensive case management model, culturally competent, holistic approach. My work at N Street is both challenging and fulfilling. My client population is typically much older than I am, and I had a steep learning curve in learning to effectively communicate and interact with the women. However, I’ve learned to take the time to listen, to ask questions, to check-in, and to follow up to build healthy relationships. N Street Village is a community of empowerment and recovery where we are in solidarity with our women and serve them with dignity and respect. The women share humbling stories that break my heart, and motivate me to never stop working for health equity, access, and justice.”
Access to Care: Thousands of DC residents living with HIV/AIDS fail to get medical care despite knowing their status. Shame, stigma, and a confusing health care system are just a few reasons for this problem. The Washington AIDS Partnership’s Positive Pathways program places peer community health workers in DC neighborhoods to identify individuals living with HIV/AIDS and help them re-enter and navigate the health care system. Through Positive Pathways, over 500 individuals have been connected to medical care. A success story from Positive Pathways:
"Emily" had stopped seeing her doctor. Our Community Health Worker Marisa tried to reach her for weeks by phone and through home visits. When they finally connected, Emily explained that she had been missing her appointments because she was financially supporting her sister and caring for her mother, who had a stroke. As they talked more, Emily explained that she was angry about being infected, and that her medications were a reminder of her HIV infection. Marisa explained that she had gone through the same thing and that while dealing with being infected was hard, Emily could overcome it. Emily was amazed when Marisa disclosed her HIV status. She shared that she had not told any of her family members that she was living with HIV. Marisa connected her to support and medical care. Emily is now taking her HIV medicine, her health has improved, and she has gone back to school.
For more information on the Washington AIDS Partnership, an initiative of the Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers, please visit the Partnership’s website: www.washingtonaidspartnership.org.