CommunityWire: The Alliance for Positive Change unveils “Alliance on the Move”

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The Alliance for Positive Change is fueling up its campaign to put the brakes on HIV and AIDS in New York City: this week the 29-year-old nonprofit unveiled its new Alliance on the Move mobile van to head to communities across the city to provide free, life-saving HIV testing, prevention, health care, and harm reduction services.

The New York City Council provided funding for Alliance to launch the program, which will bring HIV prevention education and linkage-to-care services into low-income and hard-to-reach communities throughout the city. The program is expected to reach thousands of New Yorkers each year.

“With Alliance on the Move, we are thrilled to be bringing some of our key services—including HIV and STI testing, linkage to care, and support for people struggling with substance use—into some of the highest-need neighborhoods in New York City,” says Sharen Duke, Executive Director and CEO of Alliance. “The van will improve access to care for New Yorkers.”

Representatives from one of Alliance’s hospital partners, NewYork-Presbyterian, joined the nonprofit at the ribbon-cutting. Dr. Peter Gordon, Clinical Director of NewYork-Presbyterian’s Comprehensive HIV Program, and Dr. Matthew Scherer, Attending Infectious Diseases Physician, participated in the launch event.

Mobile outreach services will feature free HIV and hepatitis C counseling and testing, STI screenings and assessments, linkage-to-care referral services, and distribution of condoms. In conjunction with the organization’s LES Harm Reduction Center, the van also will support those impacted by the opioid epidemic through syringe exchange and naloxone training initiatives.

By targeting hard-to-engage individuals and meeting New Yorkers where they are, Alliance will improve access to HIV and hepatitis C screening; identify people who are infected but unaware of their status; connect people to quality medical care; increase knowledge of risk-reduction strategies and resources; decrease isolation through connection to support services; and improve health outcomes.

Each year, Alliance administers over 1,200 free HIV tests and provides services to more than 6,000 people at its six locations in Manhattan and the Bronx. The organization also reaches 15,000 New Yorkers through its peer education and community outreach initiatives each year. The mobile van will allow the nonprofit to expand its reach to more neighborhoods across the city—bringing its services to people in need.

In conjunction with the launch, Alliance this month kicked off its Summer of Testing campaign, which is seeking to raise $5,000 for HIV testing. Testing is the gateway to prevention services and education, or for people living with HIV, a way to access the services they need. The organization’s goal is for all New Yorkers to be armed with the information they need to live healthy and productive lives.

Alliance was founded at the peak of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in 1990 to help New Yorkers affected by the crisis through connection to care, support, and resources. For the past 29 years, Alliance has continued to serve those with HIV/AIDS and expanded its successful approach to help people with other chronic health conditions.

Alliance on the Move will primarily serve high-need neighborhoods in Manhattan, including Washington Heights, East and Central Harlem, the Lower East Side, Greenwich Village, and Hell’s Kitchen. For more information about Alliance on the Move and to request its services, please contact Phillip Bermudez at 646-880-7436 or phillip2@alliance.nyc.