PREVENTION FROM THE PULPIT
Throughout the history of HIV/AIDS, few mobilization efforts have been utilized to increase HIV education and awareness to the community, specifically the “Black Church”. Only a few community based organization, Faith leaders and laity, along with health ministries within the Black Church, have advocated to address the HIV crisis in the African-American community. However, with increased HIV rates among African-Americans MSM in the southeast, we must increase our efforts with key faith leaders - utilizing innovative strategies.
What will PFTP do?
The goal of the Prevention from the Pulpit Initiative is to use the influence of faith leaders and influencers in the African-American community to raise awareness with people of faith about the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Through a series of regional faith-leader-training sessions and a national meeting, the Prevention from the Pulpit Initiative will engage faith leaders including people living with HIV/AIDS and/or Hep C, and/or at risk for HIV infection to increases mobilization and advocacy efforts with the broader faith community, addressing the HIV crisis and other social determinants of health impacting the African-American community.
The goal of the Prevention from the Pulpit Initiative is to use the influence of faith leaders and influencers in the African-American community to raise awareness with people of faith about the HIV/AIDS epidemic. This initiative will be a partnership between the United Progressive Pentecostal Church Fellowship, Vision Community Foundation and community based organizations (CBO’s), and coalitions to advance the following objectives:
(1) To increase the capacity of faith leaders to understand the recent biomedical interventions;
(2) To open and facilitate conversations among faith-based leaders to address stigma and other barriers to accessing HIV testing and linkage to care among high-risk populations within the African-American community;
(3) To facilitate the mobilization of faith leaders to engage their congregations and communities to knowing their HIV status and resources to prevention and treatment tools;
(4) To conduct a minimum of (5) Regional Summits, (1) National meeting and (2) other partnership events; to include pastors, community and faith leaders in a Prevention training designed for the faith leaders with an emphasis on biomedical interventions. These trainings will include, information on HIV Prevention, biomedical approaches to HIV Prevention, including HIV related topics in sermons, utilization of social media and getting key messages out to church’s social network.
(5) To utilize existing a prevention education “tool kits” for Black faith communities to include; Prevention Education, Sermon resources and Testimonials that address how faith can be utilized in confronting HIV related stigma.