The European PxROAR members.
My work at NAM often involves attending various
community workshops, meetings and peer support groups, helping to reinforce the
important messages of the benefits of early HIV testing, safer sex and
treatment adherence. I do this through sharing information and knowledge
regarding HIV and AIDS and by providing accurate, reliable and clear resources
for African communities living in London.
I am always
ready to grab every opportunity for learning and personal development that
comes my way and I am delighted to be one of the European PxROAR (Prevention
Research Outreach Advocacy and Representation) members. You can read about the other members on the AVAC
AVAC: Global Advocacy for HIV Prevention is based in the US, where a similar programme has been a
great success. This exciting European pilot programme runs from April 2012 to
April 2013 and is training the programme members on
the ‘new HIV prevention technologies’ (NPTs). This includes the concept
of using antiretroviral-based treatment as prevention
(TasP) and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) to help eradicate the HIV
epidemic. We are learning about HIV prevention research, education and
advocacy, through mentoring, peer support, webinars, research and networking
really enjoyed having the opportunity to talk to the other European PxROAR
members about these issues and their activities. Among other things we’ve had
lively discussions about PrEP. Amidst
the concerns, fears and recommendations raised in all our conversations, it is
very clear that each new HIV prevention option offers additional hope that we
will achieve the end of the epidemic in our lifetime.
Preventing HIV in the UK’s African
Protection Agency (HPA) estimates the number of people living with HIV
infection in the UK
in 2010 was around 91,500, of whom 24% were undiagnosed. Of these, an estimated
40,100 were gay men, or other men who have sex with men. The next biggest group
were African communities – 19,300 heterosexual African-born women and 9900
African-born men. The highest proportion of late HIV diagnoses was in the black
African community at 63%.
communities, African-born women can have real problems when it comes to safer
sex with their African male partners. If an African woman asks her husband or
partner to use a condom she could be deemed as unfaithful or undermining the husband
and this can lead to domestic violence or a break-up of the relationship. Often
this can lead to destitution of the woman, as a big majority depend on their
male partners for financial support. There need to be extensive new strategies to
specifically target these women to take control and charge of their sexual
to be one of the European members of PxROAR and I’m keen to directly engage the
African communities in London
who are disproportionately affected by the HIV epidemic. I’m using the
opportunity to learn and gather information on these subjects – and then
sharing this knowledge with the people and organisations I meet during my
I believe it
is time for Africans in the UK to take control of their own lives and health and
to be able to make informed choices for their own future.
Upcoming training on NPTs
If you are an
African professional working directly with African people living with HIV in
London and you would like to attend an upcoming training session on new HIV
prevention technologies in December 2012 (specific dates to be confirmed),
please do get in touch. The full programme details will be sent out in due
For more information
This is a
very exciting programme and I would like to share with you my findings,
suggestions and recommendations on how best we can advocate for combined HIV
prevention interventions to end the AIDS epidemic in our lifetime.
If you are an
individual or organisation working within the African community and offer
services to African people with HIV, please get in touch with me. If you
regularly subscribe to NAM’s
print and online resources, I would be very pleased to hear your views and
comments on these resources. I look forward to meeting you all very soon!
contact me for more details by email email@example.com or call me on 020 7837 6988.
updates on news relevant to people working in HIV prevention in England, you can sign up for the free
monthly email bulletin HIV prevention
news: England from NAM here.
Jackie leads NAM’s African Communities Engagement Project, which
is funded by the National Lottery through the Big Lottery Fund and the Henry