As a network we’ve learned to understand the importance of staying current. As social service providers we need to keep a finger on the pulse of where our community is headed and reach out to our constituents in fresh ways that they can relate to and that are easy for them to access. If they’re using social media, if they are texting, then we need to be doing those things as well in order to maximize our impact.
One of the things this programme has underscored for us is how important it is to stay connected with the HIV community in our state and across the region. We can gain a tremendous amount by understanding what has and hasn’t worked well for others, and why.
Members of the Positive Action Southern Initiative meet two to three times per year to facilitate ongoing networking among AIDS-related organisations and AIDS service providers in the South. During these meetings we share new information, practices that have worked well, and lessons learned in our local fight against HIV/AIDS. Through these exchanges, we all gain new insights that we can bring back to our own communities to strengthen our programmes and services. This aspect of the Southern Initiative has proved invaluable.
To hear some excerpts from one of these meetings, I encourage you to click on the videos below. In these clips you’ll hear additional insights from other Positive Action Southern Initiative network members, which they shared when we convened at AIDS2012 in Washington, DC.