Welcome Alora Gale-Schreck!

30 Jun

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Hi! My name is Alora and I am so grateful to be joining the BABES team as a Peer Advocate. Though I am new to BABES, I know life with HIV well. My brother and I both contracted HIV from our mother around birth. My mother has since passed away but my brother and I are both going strong. I am deeply honored to be the mama to two sweet and wild little boys, Oliver and Everitt. My husband, kids, dogs and I moved to Seattle three years ago from Boulder, Colorado for my husband to pursue an Art degree from UW. We are thoroughly enjoying all the Pacific Northwest has to offer. After taking a few years off from working in the HIV field, I am thrilled and energized to continue working for our sisterhood of positive women. In my spare time between work and chasing my little dudes, I am often found drinking too much coffee, reading or checking out our local art scene. I am so happy to be here and can’t wait to get to know you all!

Spring Newsletter: Bodily Autonomy

4 May

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The Importance of Bodily Autonomy
As a woman living with HIV, I have the right to control what happens to my body, to live with dignity and respect despite where I come from. I desire to live free from stigma and discrimination due to my HIV status, race or gender. Globally, Women living with HIV have to contend with intimate partner violence, institutionalized violence and other forms of violence. There is a link between violence against women and reduced access to treatment, care and support. I have been treated for Posttraumatic Stress disorder and I was coercively sterilized due to my status- these affected my desired health outcome.

To read the full article click here.

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BABES Movie Matinee

BABES is hosting a movie matinee for BABES members and their families at the BABES office on May 27 from 3-5pm. Come join us for a fun afternoon complete with refreshments!

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2017 Annual Leadership Retreat

It’s that time of year again! BABES is preparing for it’s annual retreat, July 28-30. We will be mailing out the applications on May 23. If would like an application please call us at 206-720-5566 or email the_staff@babesnetwork.org to let us know. Space is limited and is first come, first serve! Applications are due by June 23 and we will notify you by July 7.

 

 

 

 

BABES is hiring!

28 Mar

BABES is hiring an HIV-positive Peer Advocate!

REPORTS TO: BABES Program Manager Nicole Price

DESCRIPTION: BABES Network-YWCA is a peer leadership program for women and families affected by HIV, a sisterhood of women facing HIV together. BABES promotes self-empowerment, reduces isolation, enhances quality of life and serves the needs of women living with HIV and their families through peer support, advocacy, education and outreach.

Operating on the concept that HIV positive women are uniquely qualified to understand and support one another, BABES Network’s HIV positive Peer Advocates support our mission by helping other HIV positive women move into positions of leadership.  They provide peer mentorship and education to other HIV positive women, and recruit women for events and retreats.  Peer Advocates may also perform community outreach and prevention education at schools, treatment centers, shelters, prisons, churches, businesses and other groups.

RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Engage HIV+ members in conversations about treatment adherence, medical care, support
  • Support healthy behaviors and attitudes among BABES’ multi-cultural membership with active listening, strength-based counsel, education and modeling
  • Respond to provider referrals and self-referred women to provide welcoming service entry point for newly diagnosed or those re-entering the care system
  • Facilitate support groups, events and retreats.
  • Visit members in the hospital or at home as prearranged with supervisor.
  • Work with co-workers to develop an effective team to fulfill BABES Network mission.
  • Provide resources and referrals to women living with HIV/AIDS including food, housing and transportation assistance, medical care and case management
  • Stay up-to-date on medical developments related to HIV and changes to AIDS services

To view the full job description click here!

National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day – Moving Forward in 2017!

10 Mar

National Women and Girls HIV Awareness Day Event Flyer

Reflecting Back and Looking Forward!

1 Feb

Two Choices: To Cope or Not to Cope

By Anonymous

It’s a new year and the world seems to have gone crazy. I fear for our country: for minorities, the LGBT community and the 99% who are all justifiably worried that our social fabric is unraveling.

In the midst of this, I still struggle with my diagnosis, though it’s been several months since I found out that I had HIV. It’s difficult not to go back in my mind to the shock, disbelief, anger and fear that I experienced when I first found out. How could my partner have done this to me? What did I do to deserve this? How am I going to deal with my reactions to these harsh drugs that make me so sick? How – how – am I going to cope?

A long time ago, when I was going through a crippling divorce, a very wise therapist told me, “You have two choices: to cope or not to cope.”

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I chose to cope back then, and I’m choosing to cope now. You see, I’ve been blessed. I found BABES. Even though I live pretty far from their meeting place, I attend meetings whenever I can. I listen to their incredible stories of how they’ve been living with HIV for 20, 25, 30 years or more. I feel their pain, and they feel mine.

When I’m unable to show up in person, these wonderful women reach out to me to check on me and ask how I’m doing. They seem to intuit when I reach a low point, and give generously of their time and caring.

Without them, I would have floundered completely. I have a long way to go; I’ve barely started my journey. But my hope is to find acceptance within myself and move on, to focus on my healing, my supportive family, and my own creativity. With the encouragement of my group, I feel hopeful that I can keep going.

 

Thank you, BABES.

To read the full newsletter click here!