Who We Are
The Positive Speaker’s Bureau Program (PSBP) connects people living with HIV to agencies and communities throughout Alberta to share about their personal experiences living with HIV. The program is specifically focused on increasing awareness, decreasing stigma, and connecting Albertans to services and care such as HIV and STI testing.
The PSBP is delivered by the Positive Voices Caucus (PVC), which operates within the umbrella of the Alberta Community Council on HIV (ACCH). The PSBP is made possible by ViiV Healthcare.
The PSBP has recruited a roster of positive speakers from across the province of Alberta. Recognizing that HIV affects many different communities, the PSBP includes a diverse range of speakers, including individuals who identify as LGBTQ+, as indigenous, as people who use drugs, and as newcomers to Canada.
Our speakers have varying levels of public speaking experience, with the program aiming to equip people living with HIV with new skills, so that participants have greater and more meaningful opportunities to contribute to HIV work in Alberta and beyond. However, in the interest of ensuring that our speakers and their audiences have as enjoyable and as valuable an experience as possible, all of our speakers must meet the following criteria before being added to our speaking roster:
- Participate in PSBP Training Weekend
- Attend a Follow-Up Training Call
- Provide a draft of a written speech, video, or audio recording for feedback
Once a Positive Speaker has met the above criteria, they will be added to our roster so that they can be matched with speaking opportunities.
At the PVC, we believe that people living with HIV should be compensated for their contributions to HIV work. Therefore, all speakers are provided with compensation and travel support through the PSBP Program.
How it Works
Step One: Initial Contact
Local or Regional Agencies, Community Events, or Health Authorities who are interested in having a Positive Speaker present at an event contact the Positive Voices Caucus at firstname.lastname@example.org and provide event details, including the date, time, and location of the presentation, as well as information about the audience and any other components of the presentation.
We ask that all requests are made at least two weeks in advance to ensure sufficient time for planning and preparation.
Step Two: Speaker Matching
Based on the details provided by the requestor and positive speaker availability, the PSBP will match the requestor with a suitable speaker. Once the match has been made, the PSBP will act as a liaison between the requestor and speaker to ensure that all logistics are arranged.
Step Three: Speaker Compensation & Travel Support
Some areas of the province do not have Positive Speakers locally based within them. Therefore, at times, it will be necessary for Positive Speakers to travel to participate in certain speaking engagements. In this case, the PSBP is able to provide support in the form of an increased speaker honorarium, in addition to financial support for ground travel (i.e. bus or personal vehicle) and accommodation. This support is limited. Therefore, if able, we ask requesting organizations to help supplement available travel support when necessary.
Step Four: Speaking Engagement
After all arrangements have been made between the PSBP, the Positive Speaker, and the requestor, the Positive Speaker will attend the speaking engagement and deliver their presentation. The PSBP will provide an evaluation form to be shared with audience members. The purpose of this form is two-fold: 1) To ensure that the PSBP program is meeting its objectives of decreasing HIV stigma and linking people to services, and 2) To provide the Positive Speaker with feedback so that they can continue to hone their public speaking skills.
Step Five: Follow-Up
After the Speaking Engagement, a representative from the PSBP will follow-up with the requestor to retrieve all evaluation materials and to discuss the outcome of the presentation to learn what went well and what could be improved upon in the future. Requestors may also use this time to request a Positive Speaker for a future event.
A PSBP representative will also follow-up with the Positive Speaker to ensure they have received necessary compensation and travel support, to discuss the evaluation results, and to provide any follow-up support the Positive Speaker might need.
The PSBP Pilot will be providing access to Positive Speakers from July through December 2018. If you would like to book a Positive Speaker for your event, please contact us by email at email@example.com. You can also learn more about the PSBP and other PVC programming at www.positivevoices.ca.