Poz Haven Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit organization fighting to change the way communities look at HIV by changing the language we use when addressing HIV. We started out as a grassroots advocacy speaking on the streets to individuals so we can get their opinion on the HIV virus. Providing mentoring over the phone to women who have been newly diagnosed and helping them get through their diagnosis and letting them know the importance of staying in care in hopes that they can achieve an undetectable viral load.
Poz Haven Foundation wants to develop a relationship, a friendship, a closeness with women of color, African women and women of trans experience that have been diagnosed with HIV those who need the support and showing them that there is someone out there that cares about what is needed in the community when it comes to HIV and working to end the stigma associated with HIV. Being a surrogate for women of color who are not open with their status.
There are 34 million worldwide living with HIV, 1.1 million people living with HIV in the U.S. and Black women continue to be diagnosed with HIV at disproportionately higher rates than their white counterparts, stated by the CDC. In 2016 Black women in the United States were accounted for only 13% of the United States population, but 60% of the new HIV diagnosis were Black women.CDC Website
Lacking the use of condoms and having sexual intercourse with numerous partners will bring the risk of being diagnosed even higher. African Americans have less access to health care, poverty, racial discrimination and a higher rate of incarceration all this can cause the rate of HIV diagnosis to climb. There is also the stigma associated with HIV fear of disclosing sexual orientation, or one’s risk behavior. It is very important to know one’s HIV status, but those who don’t know their HIV status can’t get into care and this will cause someone to transmit HIV unknowingly to someone else.
The only way to know for sure if you're HIV positive is to get tested. It's so much better to know than not to know. Knowing your HIV status is very important. If you have contracted HIV you should be in care as soon as possible and start taking better care of your health by getting on ARV's (HIV Medication). Knowing your HIV status will also prevent you from transmitting HIV.
If you are newly diagnosed we are here for you. Poz Haven understands what it's like when a person is first diagnosed. We will link you with a mentor (Long Term Survivor) who has been diagnosed 10 years or longer. The HIV mentors can give a unique support system one on one and can meet with the individual or travel to the individual’s home to give more support for those in greatest need. The support can range from a listening ear, a helping hand, sharing their knowledge and life experiences, to talking about their personal stories of how they successfully came to terms with their diagnosis, the stigma, discrimination and the separation from friends, family, co-workers and the population in general and how they have not let their diagnosis control their life.
To find an HIV testing site click the link, type in your zip code at the top of the page (GET TESTED)HIV.ORG