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Re: GIPA coordinator Positio.

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Dear Friends,

Re: /message/8606

My understanding about Greater Involvement of People Living With HIV (GIPA)in

simple word as a lay community person is * " Involvement of HIV positive people

and at all level " (greater, meaningful all the adjectives can be added to it).*

As this debate is going on for long time in many forums, I think we all need to

understand the clear role of each individual in the response towards HIV. I am

putting my thoughts for more discussion and role clarity.

I am not attempting to challenge or compare our life and practical

experience with any degree or any education system. But I am asking

everyone in this forum to think of the life experience of people living with

HIV, it starts from the journey of shock, shattering everything, and then

finding hope, transforming self, accepting the positivity of life and

contributing towards prevention.

Is this any less important just because there is no written exam for this and we

can't produce any certificate of our life experience or for our community work


A person living with HIV has come into this field after his or her HIV

infection. We come from varied background and bring our experience of living

with it.

With all due respect to the social workers (MSW or people from other background)

trained in umpteen numbers of topics in the three academic years I am sure it is

difficult for then to understanding the life after HIV infection.

The risk that the person was posed with, life's struggle to understand what it

is to be HIV positive, understanding that life is more precious, dealing with

failing health, enjoying the recovery, understanding family relations when one

is positive, aspirations that changed just because there is virus in your body,

people treating you based on the virus, social acceptability/stand of the

family that changed overnight because we have family members living with HIV,

finding friends who are positive , coming to terms with the HIV status , making

a niche in the life and leading a life that is worthy preventing new infections

– such experience cannot be


I don't believe that any degree can prepare anyone for this than the life


Standing in the crossroads of decision making many of us have changed our lives

to lead a healthy, positive and productive life – and we strive to take this

positive message forward at every instance in our life. We motivate people to

get tested and, we motivate them to remain negative.

We come out open with our HIV status to reduce stigma and to increase social

acceptance of HIV positive people, their family members and children.

GIPA principle attempts to create space and provide opportunity for

involving people living with HIV. I believe that our lives experience

together with our work with the community for more than three years have

tremendous value and should be considered equivalent with any social work


I encourage that people be it HIV positive or HIV negative, take active role for

bringing the issues of people living with HIV to the forefront. But at the same

time the position that is tailor made for people living with HIV should be

filled by them - as I also believe that what we bring to this field cannot be

replaced by anyone.


People who have all the intent to see that the HIV epidemic is addressed in

completeness should encourage, support, mentor and nourish the people living

with HIV to take up their roles and actively represent and play that role

effectively and to respond to the needs rather than living the role for us, help

us to play our role better by assisting in articulating the way we want.

Create and provide opportunities of training and exposures. Generate

resources which will lead us to create more and more opportunities to build our

capacities. Sponsor us for on-job courses to be at par with the trained people

and many more such activities to strengthen our involvement

In social work people are sent on field work as a part of their curriculum.

Our life's lesson through living it should also be considered together with our

community work experience as one of the eligibility criteria for the Greater

Involvement of People Living with HIV (GIPA) coordinator.

To TNSACS and NACO, I request and demand a reply, why was this done?

Secondly NACO can send a fact finding team on what is better option and more

inclusive modules rather than exclusion of meaningful GIPA implementation.

Or I suggest that let NACO do an experiment in 8 or 10 states with involving

people living with HIV and INP+ can volunteer to provide good quality

coordinators in an objective way -selected through tests and interviews, and

place them and see the results for one year and then decide, rather than basing

it on assumptions.

I think in any social field a positive and constructive attitude towards the

people is more useful than any professional qualification or degree as

supportive peer educator is far useful for a person living with HIV than a non

treating medical professional within the same community.

Best regards




401 Ganga Prestige Arcade,

Laxmi Road, 612 - A, Nana Peth, Opp Ghode Peer.

Pune, Maharashtra , India

Pin 411 002

Phone - +91 20 2633 6083 or 84 or 87

Cell - + 91 922 550 51 80

e-mail: <manojpardesi@...>

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