Positive Life NSW Blog

Raising the voice of people living with HIV

Posted by on in Positive Speakers Bureau

Positive Speaker, Dai wears a dark blue tshirt with white lettering spelling out HIV Positive

Twenty four years ago, on 1 December 1994, Positive Life NSW launched the Positive Speakers’ Bureau (PSB).

This dynamic program of Positive Life NSW offers your agency, school, organisation, or group the opportunity to hear the first-hand experiences of people living with HIV (PLHIV).

The program is still running strong today, with sixteen passionate trained members of the community who actively put a human face to living with HIV.  

PSB speakers are a diverse team, and come from a range of cultural backgrounds, ages, genders, time diagnosed with HIV, and life experiences.

They openly share from their personal experiences as PLHIV to address HIV stigma and ignorance, dispel myths about HIV, and communicate a deeper understanding of what it is like to live with HIV today.  

Many of the speakers also offer powerful secondary messages of resilience, bullying, and mental health, and more.

The PSB team regularly weave their key messages of safer sex, harm reduction, and HIV prevention into each speaker’s story.

The entire team undergo regular training to upskill their public speaking skills and ensure they keep pace with the ever-changing landscape of HIV information, treatment, and prevention.

Our speakers are an impassioned and experienced team able to present to a range of audiences.

The PSB team regularly present in secondary schools under the PDHPE and Crossroads curriculum. They speak at tertiary institutions, youth services, and community based organisations throughout NSW.  

Speakers increasingly complement the training offered in the health sector at mental health and AOD (alcohol and other drugs) units, HIV and sexual health units, and accident and emergency units including allied health and aged care.

Now in 2018 as PLHIV are living longer with HIV and more engaged than ever in life, work, and love, we still welcome PLHIV who are willing to be open about their experiences of living with HIV.

PSB speakers are remunerated for their time by Positive Life NSW, and coached and supported by their PSB peers and the PSB coordinator to articulate their experiences of resilience and empowerment.

In many ways, as ending HIV is in sight, and PLHIV are more invisible than ever before, PSB speakers give a great deal to many through their willingness to stand and have their voices heard.

To discuss your requirements or to book a speaker, please call the PSB Coordinator on (02) 9206-2177 or email psb@positivelife.org.au.

For more information visit the Positive Speakers Bureau website at psb.positivelife.org.au.

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