Positive East

Positive East provides practical advice, support and care to more than 1,500 people directly and 25,000 indirectly affected by HIV living in East London.   It offers a range of holistic services which enable people living with HIV to maintain their health and well-being, support self-management of their condition and assist them to gain and sustain their well-being. The Pilgrim Trust has funded the cost of a part time Clinical Psychologist to deliver their Re;Assure services for HIV positive women who are in crisis.

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Positive East started The Re:Assure project in 2005 when it collaborated with Royal London Hospital and set up a service for gay men living with HIV. In 2008 as a response to the needs of their female clients the project expanded to include women and partners.  Re;assure offers a diverse programme of activities including  one-to-one psychological therapy, ‘self-expression, sex and relationships’ training course, peer support and skill building workshops.  The project is open to any HIV women in the catchment area and offers support for up to two years, with referrals coming mainly from HIV clinics, community outreach and their own internal services.  The average age of the project’s participants is 37, ranging from 21 to 60, and last year 100% identified themselves as black and minority ethnic.

The project supports 150 women directly plus an additional 500 as best practice is shared in the wider community. Re:Assure is managed by a part-time clinical psychologist and supported by a part-time peer support worker.  Annually, the project supports 150 women directly, and an additional 500 community members through sharing of best practice.  The project has a strong track record of improving the lives of women through a targeted and holistic approach. Past participants consistently report a significant change and increase in confidence, self-esteem, mental health and physical well being.

images with kind permission of Positive East