Street Nurses 20th Anniversary Honored -Apr13th                            
 
CONTACT: Julia Smith
Director of Communications
BC Persons With AIDS Society
 
Phone: 604.893.2209 Cell: 604.612.0222
Email: julias@bcpwa.org
 
Vancouver BC – For 20 years the BC Centre for Disease Control’s Street Nurses have been on the front line of the battle against AIDS. In recognition of their dedication and innovation, the Street Nurses have been nominated for a prestigious AccolAIDS Award.
 
AccolAIDS Awards honour the extraordinary achievements and dedication of organizations, businesses, groups and individuals responding to the AIDS epidemic in BC. The Awards Gala will be held on April 13th, 2008 at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. The Street Nurses have been nominated in the Health Promotion and Harm Reduction category.
 
The Street Nurses work with street involved and homeless people, people with mental illness, sex-trade workers, street youth, and Aboriginal groups. The nurses have dedicated their work to improving the health of people of the most marginalized and vulnerable populations by creating innovative programs such as store front clinics on Main Street, Bute Street, and Richards Street, as well as conducting outreach in bathhouses, at jails and right on the street.  Most recently the program created Bevel Up, an award winning interactive DVD.
 
"AccolAIDS honour the heroes of the AIDS movement," says Glyn Townson, chair of the BC Persons With AIDS Society, which hosts the awards. "The Street Nurses are super heroes of the AIDS world. They go to the most challenging place and work with the most at-risk populations. It’s one tough job."
 
The nurses have been on the forefront of integrating harm reduction strategies as part of nursing practice. They incorporated needle exchange into their activities in the early 1980s. They have also developed innovative women’s health programs such as Papalooza – an event that greatly improved access to PAP testing for women on the streets. The current team consists of 10 nurses, a nurse educator and two healthcare workers.
 
The BCCDC Street Nurse Program is part of the Outreach program of the Division of STI HIV Prevention and Control and is an agency of the Provincial Health Services Authority. Since the programs inception in 1988, it has responded with determination and innovation to HIV rates among men who have sex with men and intravenous drug users in Vancouver.
 
The British Columbia Persons With AIDS Society (BCPWA Society), a non-profit, consumer-driven organization is in its 21st year of operation, is dedicated to empowering persons living with HIV disease and AIDS through mutual support and collective action. As western Canada’s largest AIDS organization, with a membership of more than 4,400 HIV+ individuals, the Society provides support and advocacy services, treatment information, and volunteer opportunities to its diverse membership.
 
Julia Smith
Director of Communications
 
British Columbia Persons with AIDS Society
1107 Seymour Street, 2nd Floor
Vancouver, BC V6B 5S8
1.800.994.2437 ext. 209
604.612.0222 (cell)
<http://www.bcpwa.org>www.bcpwa.org
 
Tickets are going fast! AccolAIDS celebrates the achievements of our heroes across BC.

Join us

Sunday 13 April 2008
from 6-10 pm
at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver

for the awards gala and auction. To purchase your ticket, call 604.893.2242 or go to <http://www.bcpwa.org/>www.bcpwa.org
 
From: Julia Smith [mailto:julias@bcpwa.org]

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Street Nurses 20th Anniversary

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