HIV COUNSELING & RESOURCE LINKAGE
Our experienced staff will meet with you to have a private, confidential conversation. We may discuss:
- What is HIV (and other STIs)
- What may make someone more vulnerable to acquiring HIV or a STI
- Strategies to reduce your chances of acquiring HIV and STIs that fit your sexual health goals
- How to manage HIV (if you are living with HIV) to achieve an undetectable viral load and reduce the possibility of a sexual partner acquiring HIV
MPOWERMENT (FOR GAY AND BISEXUAL MEN)
Project ARK’s Mpowerment Project (also called MPOWERSTL) is an evolving project dedicated to empowering and mobilizing St. Louis’ young gay and bisexual male community.
Guiding Principles include:
- Combining HIV prevention education/skills building opportunities with fun and engaging social activities to ensure young men attend Mpowerment events, learn about and get tested for HIV and STIs.
- Young gay and bisexual men want to learn from their peers.
- It is essential to build a young gay and bisexual men’s community where there is support for healthy sexual behaviors, routine HIV and STI testing, and the identities for all persons on the gender and sexual orientation continuum.
- Young men take ownership of Mpowerment project activities
- Young men are most likely to start preventing the acquisition of HIV and STIs (i.e. using condoms, reducing the number of sex partners), and get tested regularly when they see and hear that their peers using HIV/STI prevention tools and getting tested regularly.
- The Mpowerment project enriches and strengthens young gay and bisexual men’s pride about who they are, and encourages them to explore and celebrate their sexuality by not just focusing on condom use but by including a wide variety of safer sex behaviors.
- The Mpowerment project should use a combination of events and activities in order to address the variety of issues (i.e. self-esteem, homophobia, stigma, substance use) that cause young men to engage in sexual behaviors that increase their HIV/STI vulnerability and/or chose not to get tested for HIV/AIDS and STDs.
We are always creating new ways for young gay and bisexual men to come together, meet, socialize, have fun, and learn.
LIFE (LEARNING IMMUNE FUNCTION ENHANCEMENT)
Maintaining a healthy life with HIV is more than going to the doctor and taking your meds. Medical care is vital to fighting the disease, but managing the disease and living a full-life is just as important and is something only you can do! LIFE is an opportunity to empower you to improve your health. We want to help by providing you with the knowledge, motivation, skills, and support necessary to improve your own health.
Join us for a safe and confidential workshop where youth and young adults living with HIV come together to learn strategies and gain support in areas that will help them manage HIV.
We offer 4-hour a group or individual session.
Workshop topics include:
- Developing healthy coping skills to achieve your best physical and emotional health
- Identifying a life purpose and setting goals
- Communicating with those in your support circle (partners, family, friends, medical providers, case manager, counselor, etc.)
- Taking daily care of your self (exercise, nutrition, sleep, water, breathing, disease prevention)