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beyondpositive launches an online survey asking HIV-Positive people across the UK for their experiences of support services, and their ideas for the future

surveyIt’s 2014 and we’re all still feeling the pinch – six years after the financial crisis started. But if the financial squeeze is hard at home it’s becoming even worse for charities, charities who fund and run most of the HIV support services in the UK.

These charities are under pressure to modernise and make their services more cost effective whilst at the same time continuing to provide an excellent level of support, and with an ever changing demographic – different kinds of support.

Many of us have tales, both good and bad, about support we’ve received (or failed to receive). Below is a quote from Tom Hayes (our Editor-in-chief)’s blog about an experience attending one HIV support charity…

“I arrived at the front door, or so Google Maps told me. It was a door, with shuttered windows either side and a doorbell. I rang the doorbell, and a few minutes later someone opened the door and ushered me inside. I signed in on the visitors book and walked through to the group room.

There they were, six older guys – easily in their sixties, or seventies. Had a got the right night? This was the gay men’s support group? I could hear them, they were moaning about their diabetes, one was talking about the gas heater in his council flat. I don’t think there was one without a walking stick or an eye patch. Is this my future? Is this what I’ve got to look forward to?

My heart was racing. I was terrified. The group leader approached me and asked if I’d brought proof of my HIV diagnosis. Like anyone would lie about having HIV? Especially to come and endure this? No. I couldn’t. I bolted. I ran for the door. I couldn’t face the possibility that that was my future. 

That experience put me off accessing any support, and even attending my HIV consultant appointments for three months.”

We at beyondpositive want to hear your experiences of HIV support in the UK – both good and bad.  So we’ve created a brief survey…

The survey is open to anyone LIVING IN THE UK, who has received a POSITIVE HIV DIAGNOSIS. You’ll be asked to rank your preferences on different types of support, where and when you’d like to access them – as well as your ideas for future types of support.

At the end of the survey there is a chance to win a £20 Amazon voucher. To do this simply fill in your email address on the last page. Your email address will not be linked with the survey results, and will not be passed on to any third parities. Your privacy is important to us.

The survey, and competition closes: 31st September 2014.

To take part in the survey simply head to: http://tinyurl.com/HIVsupport2014

Many thanks,

the beyondpositive team

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