LIAAC is excited to announce that we have been awarded funding by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) for a comprehensive HIV prevention program, focusing on Young Men of Color who have Sex with Men (YMSM). LIAAC’s YMSM Alternative Prevention and Care (YMSM APAC) program will address HIV prevention with this population, who are at the highest risk of acquiring HIV. This is LIAAC’s third grant directly funded from the CDC.
Dr. Gail Barouh, President/CEO of LIAAC congratulated the hard working staff of LIAAC for once again securing funding for our clients, noting that reducing new infections among the YMSM community, through increased access and linkage to care, will improve the overall wellbeing of all Long Islanders.
Through this funding opportunity, LIAAC is proud to provide targeted testing, diligent outreach, and effective intervention programs to the YMSM community. This will mean a focus on reducing new infections, increasing access to care for HIV-positive individuals, and promoting healthy choices. Using a mobile approach of street and social media outreach, our Care Navigators will engage high risk HIV-negative persons in testing, PrEP services, and VOICES/VOCES, an interactive group discussion on condom education and safer sex. Testing will include HIV, HCV and STIs (Gonorrhea, Chlamydia and Syphilis). LIAAC is excited to bring rapid Syphilis testing, as well as couples testing through this program. Individuals who are identified as HIV-positive will be linked to proper medical care, provided essential and supportive services, as well as enrolled in CLEAR (Choosing Life! Empowerment! Action! Results!), a multi-session, one-on-one program that provides individuals with education and techniques to make healthy choices and reduce the spread of HIV. YMSM APAC will also include a mentoring program, provided by an Engagement Specialist, to empower YMSM individuals and promote community leadership.