HIV/AIDS Prevention

HIV/AIDS Prevention

Information on Projects concerning HIV/AIDS Prevention

There are five main types of activities in this area:

1. Prevention of HIVtransmission amongst drug users.

This service provides:

  1. Primary delivery and exchange of syringes.
  2. Provision of condoms.
  3. Provision of antibacterial wipes and disinfectants.
  4. Secondary exchange of syringes.
  5. One-to-one consultations with outreach workers.
  6. After testing and medical inspection, referral to the TB Dispensary (in-patient department); Skin and Venereal Dispensary, or Centre for AIDS Prevention and Treatment (mobile, fixed and street clinics).
  7. Consultations with social workers on the issues related to a safer lifestyle.
  8. Legal help.
  9. Psychological help.
  10. Medical help: bandages, examination, referral, consultation; provision of medicines.
  11. Specialist advice on narcology.
  12. Distribution of information: leaflets, newspapers, journals, booklets, guidebooks.
  13. Voluntary consultation and testing with the help of express tests.

These services are provided through fixed consultation centres, mobile consultation centres (reequipped minibus) and 12 street routes.

The fixed consultation centre is efficiently located in the centre of the city, near one of the largest areas of IDU use.

The mobile centre for syringe exchange enables us to access even the most remote areas of drug use in the city. The flexibility of the mobile centre means that we can respond easily to changing circumstances and emergencies.

The main aim of the street routes is to locate IDUs and provide them with information on a safer lifestyle, as well as support the work of other HIV/AIDS programmes and medical organizations.

Outreach workers establish and maintain trustworthy relations with IDUs, as well as teaching them about health issues. Street routes characteristically have a high concentration of IDUs and dispense various medicines.

The following scheme shows how the training of outreach workers and the outreach work operate.

Training IDUs, who are part of the ‘Harm Reduction’ programme, has five main stages:

  • Selection of IDUs who are trained for further outreach work. The criteria for selection are attendance and results of a post-training test and activities.
  • Training of outreach workers: practical training includes the knowledge and skills needed by an outreach worker, as well as management of outreach work. Following the training, an internship is provided.
  • Outreach work: the daily tasks depend on the type of outreach work chosen (on the street, at home, etc.), and on the documentation, attendance and participation in the outreach meetings.
  • An internal supervisor oversees this process.Once one group of outreach workers has been trained, the next cycle is started immediately.
  • Every outreach worker has the help of fomer IDUs in order to establish initial contact with the drug users.

Main results of 2009:

1. Number of IDUs contacted: 9207
2. Number of syringes distributed: 120971
3. Number of syringes collected: 678663
4. Number of condoms distributed: 358121
5. Number of IDUs who benefited from the programme: 640

2. Community Center for IDU.

Three of our outreach workers, Aleksey Vlasov, Konstantin Shportun and Mikhail Kolesnikov, came up with the idea of establishing a Community Center as part of the fund.

The purpose of the center is to highlight the problem of drug use and bring together those who have been affected by drug abuse. At the center we educate drug users and seek to provide them with care and assistance, as well as providing a safe and comfortable place for them to congregate and spend time in a different environment to the street         .

Therefore we work in order to:

  • Mobilize and bring together drug users, by encouraging them to talk openly about their problems and subsequently solve the problems prevalent in the community.
  • Promote the concept of self-help among drug users.
  • Provide alternative ways for drug users to spend their time (ie activities which do not entail drug use and illegal behaviour).