HIV West Yellowhead offers a wide range of free safer sex and harm reduction supplies.
Harm Reduction is “A set of non-judgmental strategies and approaches which aim to provide and/or enhance the skills, knowledge, resources and support that people need to live safer and healthier lives” (Streetworks, 1997).
HIV West Yellowhead has had a funded Harm Reduction program in place since April 2014. The program is coordinated by our outreach worker, Lisa in Edson, who travels to service the West Yellowhead region.
Needle Exchange Program
Free safe injection supplies – free and confidential supplies by request
needles, filters, cookers, ties, sterile water, alcohol swabs
Pharmacy program – free and confidential supplies are available at the following pharmacies:
- Rexall, Jasper
- Shoppers Drugmart, Edson
- Life Med, Whitecourt
Safe needle disposal program – supply of sharps containers as well as list of drop off locations in the West Yellowhead region
Take home Naloxone program training and workshop
Due to an increase of accidental overdose deaths (largely due to Fentanyl being sold to and used by unknowing buyers) in our province and country, HIVWY (along with other HIV organizations in the province) has partnered with Alberta Health Services to educate, train and empower clients, drug users and service providers to take a stand against accidental overdose deaths.
Drug use in our province has become more risky, as the drugs have become more potent, less expensive and easier to buy or manufacture. As the rate of drug use increases, so does the risk of an accidental overdose which can result in death. HIVWY is committed to the health and safety of all of the communities in our region. We believe that training individuals how to recognize, assess and treat an overdose is a key part in providing quality care, support and education to the individuals we serve, as well as the community as a whole.
Our Prevention and Education Coordinator is happy to set up training for anyone interested in the program.
Our Outreach worker is available to set up clients with a quick training session on how the kits are to be used, as well as connect clients who use opiates with a prescriber in order to obtain their free Naloxone kits.
Free safe sex supplies
Free male and female condoms, dental dams, and lubricant. Supplies available through contacting us or dropping in to our Hinton office.
Care and Support
HIV West Yellowhead has an office location in Hinton and staff travel to the communities of Jasper, Edson, and Whitecourt on a regular basis. Services can be accessed in person at our office, over the phone, or a meeting can be arranged in your community. Our Support and Outreach Worker is based in Edson and can be
contacted for information or to arrange a meeting at a location of your choice or to deliver supplies.
- Non-judgmental, listening ear
- One-on-one support to people living with HIV, Hepatitis C, or an STI
- Referral to Northern HIV Clinic, Hepatitis C Clinic, physicians, dentists, therapeutic counseling, drug treatment, detox, mental health services, housing services, emergency needs, food banks, welfare/low income supports etc.
- Referral to HIV, Hepatitis C, or sexual health services
- Referral to HIV or STI testing
- Pre and post HIV test counseling
- Financial assistance for travel to HIV or Hepatitis C clinic appointments
- Treatment information support
- Access to computer services for internet usage and word processing, phone, and fax services
- Free harm reduction supplies such as safer sex tools and needle exchange
Prevention and Education
HIV West Yellowhead offers a wide variety of learning opportunities for individuals, schools, organizations, communities, and businesses. We are able to
adapt presentations to the needs and interests of the audience. We are able to provide full day workshops, shorter sessions, one hour presentations, or ten minutes orienting new staff!
Topics include but are not limited to:
Hep C Basics
Harm Reduction Basics
Beyond the Basics of HIV and Hep C
Staff or Volunteer Orientations
Overdose Prevention (take home Naloxone)