Herts Aid is an HIV and Sexual Health Charity providing support and clinical and educational services, in and around Hertfordshire.
We achieve this by offering emotional and practical support, educational projects and community based clinics.
We are a service user led organisation, which is committed to
ensuring a culture that is warm, inclusive and caring.We work in partnership with statutory and non-statutory providers with the aim of improving the sexual health of the population. Our service is free of charge and open to everyone.
Our services include information and support; Outreach Services; Education and Prevention; iText; CAB advice services; Befriending; Support Groups and social activities; Clinical Services (including Rapid HIV testing); Hardship Funds; counselling referrals; access to Food Banks as well as TV and radio schemes. Service Users are also able to access laptops at both our offices along with opportunities to undertake a selection of e-learning courses, subject to availability. All services are delivered from our Ware and Watford offices. Our Outreach Service means we can also support people in their own homes or within the community, if they prefer.
Herts Aid strives for and is committed to promoting an inclusive society where HIV and sexual health is understood and accepted without prejudice or stigma
Support Groups and Social Activities
We hold monthly support/social groups aimed at meeting the needs of anyone living with HIV and AIDS and their families. Details on our monthly events diary circulated to all service users.
At our sites service users can access up to date information about HIV in a comfortable, safe environment.
Transport can be provided, subject to availability.
Herts Aid offers emotional support to individuals living with HIV and affected partners or family members, whether they are newly diagnosed, starting treatment or have been living with HIV for some time.
Our counselling referral service provides an opportunity to explore coming to terms with a HIV diagnosis and living with HIV in a more positive way. Herts Aid refers to qualified counsellors, bound by the BACP code of ethics.
Herts Aid provides support for health issues regarding HIV, sexual, mental and general health, and we refer to GUM clinics and other healthcare professionals. One to one support is provided by our support workers and transport can be provided where poor health would prevent attendance at an appointment. (Subject to availability)
In conjunction with the Citizens advice service, Herts Aid can offer appointments with a trained CAB advisor in both Ware and Watford regarding issues such as: debt, financial advice, benefits, housing, relationship breakdown and other issues which require professional advice. The Advisor is available either in person by appointment, or by telephone or email.
Our trained volunteers will work with people on a one to one basis, and the service can be varied according to the individual needs of each person.
Immigration Advisory Service
Working with Blavo & Co Solicitors, St Albans and the Red Cross Refugee and Asylum service Herts Aid can offer an appointment to see an Immigration solicitor for advice, at our premises in Ware or at Blavo & Co in St Albans or London. This service is by appointment only.
Hardship Fund & Children’s Fund
Herts Aid can offer small grants for those who are experiencing financial crisis as a result of HIV infection and can make referrals to other agencies for hardship grants.
We also have a separate fund specifically for children infected or affected by HIV/AIDS.
We offer a confidential Rapid HIV testing service using a finger prick test, which gives results in minutes. Any positive result is fast tracked to GUM clinics in Hertfordshire for clinical support and further testing.
Condoms and lubricant are available at all Herts Aid offices, service delivery sites and at all educational and training events.
Herts Aid offers Chlamydia screening at all sexual health workshops and awareness events. Testing is also available at all offices and service delivery sites across Hertfordshire.
Education and health promotion
Men's Sexual Health Work
Herts Aid provides online support to men who have sex with men, on Gaydar, as well as a condom ordering service. We also offer 121 support.
Herts Aid has a BME communities worker who has the responsibility of working closely with BME groups through community centres and organisations, faith groups, media and sporting events. BME communities are disproportionately affected by HIV. It is also often difficult to reach these communities.
Herts Aid is running a campaign “How sure are you about your HIV status?” This is to raise awareness about the benefits of knowing your status, and to reduce the stigma associated with HIV among BME communities. We have set up several drop-in sessions in and around Herts for FREE HIV tests that provide results on the same day in a discreet and confidential environment.