The grant is to expand health care activities to at least 1,200 young gay men and other MSM per year at POZ’s medical and support clinic in Port au Prince.
Established in 1995, POZ takes a holistic approach to the HIV epidemic, and is involved in a wide range of activities from HIV prevention, to care and support for people living with HIV, to support for women who have been abused, to advocacy and networking.
This is the first grant that POZ has received from the EJAF. EJAF is an independent AIDS charity which provides focused and sustainable funding to frontline programmes that help to alleviate the physical, emotional and financial hardship of those living with, affected by or at risk of HIV and AIDS.
Strengthening POZ’s work with gay men and other MSM
This grant will help strengthen POZ’s work with gay men and other MSM. Peer educators will reach out to gay men and MSM, linking them to confidential medical services, support groups and other services at the POZ medical and support clinic. This grant will help provide lab staff and equipment for STI testing, medications for certain STIs, and communications work to reduce homophobia and raise awareness of the services POZ provides.
The barriers to accessing medical services like HIV/STI testing and treatment are significant for gay men and MSM in Haiti. Not only are many tests and medications hard to come by and/or expensive, but gay men and other MSM also face high levels of stigma and discrimination from health care professionals and society in general. POZ is one of the only organisations in Haiti that works with religious groups, opinion leaders and the media to challenge HIV-related stigma and discrimination in the country.
As Haiti marks the third anniversary of the devastating 2010 earthquake this week, much attention is focused on the ongoing cholera outbreak and finding homes for the 360,000 people still living in tents. While these are undoubtedly priority issues, POZ is delighted to receive this funding to continue its work with some of the most marginalised people in the country.
Read more about POZ’s work here.