Could you imagine having a health condition, a condition about which you could not even tell your own family? And if you told someone they might not even want to be near you? This is a reality for many of our clients living HIV/AIDS. Cultural stigma and fear of rejection is still a real thing in 2021. 100 clients are enrolled in Project ONE which provides medical case management (navigating healthcare system and resources), housing support, and most importantly, emotional support.
Keith Burress, Program Director, has been involved with Project ONE for over 25 years. “The stigma around HIV/AIDS is real and many of our clients are afraid to even tell their families and friends.”
Clients often feel frozen because of their health condition. Project ONE is hoping to create an environment where clients can feel supported, connected to resources, and empowered to strive forward towards their goals and dreams.
With the continuum of care Family Service provides, clients are able to utilize the counseling services and housing vouchers. Youth clients in the Supportive Housing program are receiving help through Project ONE’s prevention and outreach efforts. This is just one more way Family Service is helping to reduce barriers and improve lives.
With the onset of COVID-19, Project ONE has transitioned to virtual services. Case managers are able to connect with clients through phone and Zoom and still provide the much needed emotional support.
“Many of our clients are fearful of the unknown with COVID. While our clients may be at higher risk, it is also not knowing the potential effects COVID would have with HIV,” said Burress.
Project ONE also hosts short term topical support groups. Starting February, there will be a COVID-19 support group launching to help clients share mutual experiences and to support each other.
Regardless of COVID-19, Project ONE will continue to guide, support, and empower clients to live to their fullest potential.
To stay up to date on all things Project ONE, go to www.familyservice.us/programs/project-one or www.facebook/chescohns. From there you can learn more about HNS and the condom subscription service.