Positive People was founded by Dominic DíSouza, the first HIV positive activist from Goa in the year 1992. When found positive, he was quarantined owing to a provision in the Goa Public Health Act 1986 mandating isolation for PLHIVs. His friends approached the high court and launched a public campaign to release him. As of today this provision stands amended with the State having only discretionary power. Later, on being released Dominic went on to publicly declare his HIV status and asserting that he had every right to live a normal life. From those bold beginnings, PP has grown to the largest operational NGO in Goa, addressing various issues related to HIV/ AIDS Care & Support, Prevention, Advocacy, Training and Research.
The Vision of PP is to build a vibrant and self-reliant network of independent and interdependent groups of PLHAs and other vulnerable people in Goa, who will assert, defend and expand their social, economic and cultural rights for their identity, inclusion, opportunity, equity and sustainable livelihood, so as to thus control the spread of HIV & STDs in Goa.
LEGAL STATUS Registered under society registration Act 1860, Government of India
Registered u/s 12 A of the IT Act
Positive people carries out wide range of programs and services to address the HIV/AIDS issues based on the right based perspective 1. Prevention linki) Program Educational Institutions has over the years systematically evolved and continuously been improvised to address the needs of youth and in particular of adolescents. This package after a trial period evolved into the transcendent Module XI concept focused on providing adolescents with a comprehensive sexual health package. Aims of the program are to enhance life skills among young people and institutionalise life skill education. i) Goa is in the accelerated phase of HIV epidemic. Five NGOs funded through Goa State AIDS Control Society were providing HIV prevention interventions to the SWs in Goa. Unfortunately, in 2004 these activities came to a sudden halt as Baina, the red-light area demolished. The displaced sex workers were not rehabilitated and they scattered all over Goa. This decision resulted in pushing sex work underground and became counter productive with respect to HIV/AIDS prevention activities. Major focus of the intervention is behaviour change communication coupled with product and services along with strengthening peer net work, counselling, distribution of condoms &IECs, STI services, legal intervention etc. iii)
Goa is becoming the drug hub and transit point in the passage of drugs in the local and international markets. There is high demand for drugs from natives, Indian and foreign tourists. The objective of the project is to reduce vulnerabilities to HIV/AIDS among IDUs through harm reduction activities like substitution therapy, needle exchange, peer education, counselling etc. The project provides a drop-in-centre facility to IDUs to provide them with a safe space to access these services.i) Truckers, migrants, industrial and tourism workersSince it is famous tourist destination, millions of tourists visit Goa annually. Boom in the mining and construction industries escalated the inflow of migrants and truckers. Majority of these migrants are vulnerable to HIV. We provide information and services to these group aimed to protect themselves from HIV and other social and economic exploitation.(photo)iv) Sexual and reproductive health.
2. Care and supportWe have three programs in these areas
i) Adhar PP has been working in care and support of PLHAs for the last 15 years. It addresses their social, emotional, medical, economical, nutritional and mental health needs. Clients who are referred to the organization undergoes a detailed needs assessment to assess their socio-economic condition, emotional and mental health, drug abuse, medical history, nutritional needs, quality of life, sexuality etc. PP either provides the required service or refer them to other service providers. PLHIVs share their concerns and problems during the support group meetings and collectively respond to stigma and discrimination. The groups have undertaken different programs like micro-financing and income generation assistance.ii)
Since it is acknowledged that, good home based care could reduce the burden on health care facilities, we have started a comprehensive home based care program. A unique mental health component is incorporated in to this on the light of reports on the rise of suicides among PLHAs in Goa. The hidden burden on unlinked caregivers has been evaluated by us and the program has designed with the innovative methodologies to reduce the burden and support this invisible population. Informal care givers the following the main subjects 1) Fever 2)Respiratory Tract Infections 3)Mouth and Throat 4)Diarrhea 5)Dehydration 6)Common skin problems 7)Tiredness and weakness 8)Pain 9)Anxiety and depression 10)Confusion and Dementia 11)Nausea and vomiting 12)TB 13)Prevention of infection 14)Infant feeding 15)Nutritioniii)
We are providing comprehensive paediatric care and support for children infected with HIV in Goa linking CLHIVs to nearest ARV centres in collaboration with NGOs and care homes for children. Of these 91 children 22 are on ARV and on DOT. 19 children have lost both their parents and are taken care by the children homes. We provide psychosocial, educational, nutritional, recreational and medical support. 3. AdvocacyPPís forte has been carrying out advocacy activities, since its inception. The founder of PP, Mr. Dominic DíSouza, successfully campaigned against a discriminatory and inhuman provision in the Goa Public Health Act. An exemplary incident of PPís commitment to our stake holders was shown during the demolition of the Baina red-light area. PP stood in solidarity with women and children who were evicted from their homes and thrown on the roads in heavy rains, while their homes were smashed by bulldozers. Besides providing immediate material relief to the victims, PP systematically documented the impact of this State sponsored violence on the health and well-being of sex workers and advocated with the National and State authorities to assert the rights of the victims for comprehensive rehabilitation. PP extended legal support and referral services to women, PLHIVs, sex workers and migrant women. PP collaborated with lawyers collective, council for social justice and peace and other NGOs to oppose the state initiative on mandatory premarital testing. Subsequently Goa government rolled back from this attempt. Recently We initiated a campaign to pass an HIV/AIDS bill for the state of Goa. Research Training and Documentation
PP has conducted scientific research among stake holders, in collaboration with national and international organizations and consultants. Our intervention projects are carried out systematically with scientifically prepared baseline, midline and end line studies, so that the outcome of the programs can be analyzed and disseminated among stake holders and opinion makers. The study findings were disseminated among primary and secondary stake holders. Our research findings brought light to policy makers and institutions on developing a comprehensive intervention approach for vulnerable women. PP has also initiated micro-research projects and micro-studies and brought out research papers, which were then disseminated to the concerned authorities and the public at large. We are the premier and oldest NGO in this field. The organization is best equipped in terms of capacities, resources and experience to assume the dual role of being a nodal training and resource centre. BOARD MEMBERSMs Isabel Santa Rita VasMs Cynthia AndradeMr Raj VaidhyaProf Vikram PatelMr Reginald GomesMs Tamsin PereiraMs Priya DiasCONSULTANTSDr Maryam ShahmaneshDr Anirban ChatergeeDr Neeraja ChowdharyDr Mariette CorreaAdv Albertina AlmeidaAdv Shanti FonsecaMaithili Appt St InezPanaji-Goa 403 001S(0832) 2431827(0832) 2424396