Posted: Wednesday 11th October 2017
Hertfordshire County Council’s Public Health Service has partnered up with the charity Catholics for AIDS Prevention and Support (CAPS) to launch a unique and innovative online resource to address HIV issues in the Christian faith.
Launched at an event in Southwark on 11 October 2017, the Positive Faith resource includes a new video series in which people directly affected by HIV, along with pastors and theologians, discuss HIV and how it interacts with their faith.
The first of its kind, this project is funded by Public Health England (PHE) and sponsored by Hertfordshire County Council’s director of Public Health as part of an HIV Prevention Innovation Fund.
Hertfordshire County Council’s director of Public Health, Professor Jim McManus, said: “It is our responsibility to reach out to all communities with HIV prevention education and support.
“Positive Faith seeks to bridge the gap between churches and health services. It is a unique opportunity for us to help faith leaders create a welcoming environment for people living with HIV and have the tools they need to support those people. It will also help health and social care professionals understand the links between faith and health.
“It is hoped that this will become a valuable resource on which other faiths can build.” Positive Faith was devised and produced by people living with and affected by HIV.
Local HIV charity HertsAid supported the project by co-running workshops so that Hertfordshire residents could be involved in testing the resources and shaping the pilot. If successful, it will be rolled out across the country.
In 2015 there were 1,111 people aged 15-59 living with diagnosed HIV in Hertfordshire. However 2014 estimates suggest that 17 per cent of those living with HIV are unaware of their infection. This means they risk having poorer health and could also pass the infection on to someone else. Getting diagnosed early is essential in helping to reduce transmission and improve health.
For more information visit www.positivefaith.net