What is the Positive Speakers Bureau?
The Bureau is a highly committed and diverse group of HIV Positive people who seek to educate the wider community on the issues of living with HIV & AIDS.
Our speakers are the human face of HIV and help to reduce fear, myths and discrimination.
The People Living with HIV/AIDS Victoria Positive Speakers Bureau is run by and for HIV positive people who are highly trained public speakers.
Key messages are also delivered on prevention, education, harm reduction and the promotion of safer behaviour for the people of Victoria.
Speakers develop their presentations in response to each request and are selected to speak in accordance with their subject matter knowledge and experience in particular areas.
Where do our speakers talk?
In the last two years we delivered over 350 talks to an audience of more than 11000 people.
65% of talks are to years 7 -12 Secondary school students. Other talks are to Universities, Hospitals, NGO’s and Community, Training and Corporate organisations.
The Department of Health has funded a rural secondary school program where our speakers present on HIV & Sexual health with their personal narratives.
All speakers attend formal training workshops and are provided with comprehensive skills development. These areas (of training) include:
- Media Coaching
- Effective Communication and adult learning techniques
- STI and HIV courses including International and National Epidemiology
- HIV & Mental Health well being
- Certificate IV Assessment and Workplace Trainer
- Creative Writing Workshops
- Multimedia and Presentation Training
The Positive Speakers Bureau talks are informed by:
- The Department of Education and Training - Whole of School sexuality education program
- The State and National HIV/AIDS and STI Strategies
- Latrobe University’s Australian Research Centre in Sex Health and Society.
Our speaker’s primary aim is to talk about their personal experiences of living with HIV. However topics such as homophobia, sexuality, social justice and equity are common discussion areas.
The PLWHA Victoria Positive Speakers Bureau was co winner with ParaQuad Victoria for “Innovative Service Delivery – Private Provider” at the 2005 Community Services & Health Industry Training Awards.
This award category recognised the long term inter-agency collaboration between PLWHA Victoria and ParaQuad Victoria and embodies the concept of empowerment for people with both visible and invisible disabilities. In the Student category of “Lifelong Leaner,” Jeffery Robertson (a member of the Speakers Bureau) was also the winner.
The Positive Speakers Bureau Coordinators position is funded by the BBV/STI Program of the Department of Health and was funded in 2004 when the Department implemented the 2003 Review Panels recommendations.
The Speakers Bureau is reliant upon the fees charged to provide training and pay the speakers.