The aim of the weekend was to offer a space for women and teenage girls living with HIV to meet, share experiences and create social circles – imperative to building confidence and trust, while also providing information and strategies to assist them in feeling more empowered and liberated in their daily lives.
The main objectives of the conference were to facilitate networking, provide a weekend of relaxation and wellbeing and importantly, to educate and promote peer support and discover where opportunities for support to women living with HIV could develop. Many of the new participants were unaware of the valuable services QPP provided or could direct them to. The conference was an opportune pathway to raising awareness and linking services. Additionally, QPP would be able to hear first-hand the messages concerning positive women and ultimately adapt innovative programs to pilot throughout Queensland.
Minority groups in Queensland particularly, but not limited to, are those living in remote areas or from CALD backgrounds. These women often feel isolated and without support, which too often leads to feelings of worthlessness and depression.
To gain an insight and understanding of the needs of women and girls living with HIV, we must ensure appropriate and effective processes are taken to assist, nurture and champion them into being proud and empowered women. Forums like this conference are powerful avenues to engage positive women of all ages and backgrounds, to gather significant messages of their journey, to capture their determination and honour their courage…together!