PARCours: Coming together against HIV/AIDS!

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The Fondation québécoise du sida is proud to invite you to PARCours, a solidarity event against HIV/AIDS and in support of people living with HIV.

Help us to raise funds against HIV/AIDS!

Get involve now with PARCours by donating here: www.fqsida.org/PARCours2017/FQSIDA

PARCours – Sunday October 1st – Laurier Park

PARCours will be held Sunday October 1st at Laurier Park. We will get together with enthusiasm and motivation: the Fondation québécoise du sida, participating groups, volunteers, allies, donors… There will be kiosks, music, and we will take the opportunity to form a big human chain symbolizing the red ribbon.

Ready for the challenge?

Join us on October 1st, from 10 am to 2 pm, to form a big solidarity chain and to help us raising funds! For more information, contact us at 514 842-4004 or at info@fqsida.org.

Thanks for your involvement!

Your donation finances the mission of the 19 group members of the Fondation québécoise du sida. Your support is essential to our work!

Mark Wainberg: a big name in the fight against HIV has left us

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Mark Wainberg
a big name in the fight against HIV has left us
May 18, 2017

Mark WainbergThe world-renowned scientist from Montreal, Mark Wainberg, died in April at the age of 71.

Since the early 1980s, he was actively involved in the fight against HIV/Aids and he made it his fight. He not only devoted his scientific and medical career to it, but also became one of the pioneers of the defence of the rights of people living with HIV/AIDS and of the most affected communities, at a time when the subject was taboo and unpopular.

Dr Wainberg is known in particular for discovering the anti-viral medication, 3TC, in 1989. This was one of the very first effective molecules against HIV. The 3TC helped to change the course of the illness and is still widely used in tri-therapies, thanks to which the infection has become a chronic illness.

Mark Wainberg is also famous for his multiple contributions regarding the virus’ resistance to medicines. With his team, he worked to enhance understanding of the mechanisms and genetic mutations of the virus, and to find ways to counter them.

Dr. Wainberg, who was close to the Quebec anti-AIDS milieu and the Farha Foundation in particular, stated in 2000, during an interview with the McGill Reporter: “It is incumbent upon us all to be AIDS activists”. A fervent militant for access for all to medication, he is one of the people who enabled marginalized populations and poor countries, especially in Africa, to benefit from the results of research on HIV/AIDS.

Source : Radio-Canada
Yanick Villedieu – April 4, 2017

ABC OF HIV : Primary infection

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ABC OF HIVPrimary infection
May 18, 2017

This is the period immediately after the virus enters the body. At this stage, the virus multiplies quickly and transmission risks are highest.

This first phase can come with flu-like symptoms such as fever, throat pain, muscular pain, fatigue, swollen lymph-nodes and skin eruptions.

These symptoms, which disappear after a few weeks, are not present in all infected persons. Sometimes the primary infection stage goes by unnoticed. It is during this period that the immune system produces antibodies to defend itself against the virus.

Source : L’essentiel du VIH/sida, Portail VIH/sida du Québec, Benoît Lemire

Get involved in the Fqsida board of directors

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Get involved in the Fqsida board of directors
May 18, 2017

Fqsida has taken on a new momentum, particularly since Baya Touré joined its management in February and following our recent merger with the Farha Foundation.

Over the next few years, we plan to carry out many activities aimed at increasing our visibility and momentum, so we need a strong, diversified, motivated, and committed board of directors.

This could be the time for you to make a difference! Many opportunities are open to you: Together

˃ Representative of people living with HIV
• for Montreal (1 year)
• for other areas (1 or 2 years)
˃ Representative of Montreal (2 years)
˃ Expert: with a particular expertise or affiliation (funding, events, development, communication etc.)

Interested? We invite you to send us, before the 29th of May 2017, a brief letter of introduction describing your career and your motivation. Address it to Mrs. Mrs. Baya Touré, General Director, at direction@fqsida.org.

Fqsida and the Farha Foundation join forces against HIV/AIDS

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Fqsida and the Farha Foundation join forces against HIV/AIDS
May 18, 2017
SOLIDAIRES
We announced it last April 4th: the Fondation québécoise du sida and the Fondation Farha merged on the 1st of April under the banner of the Fondation québécoise du sida to better join forces against HIV/AIDS!

“This is excellent news for all the men and women fighting against HIV/AIDS in Quebec!” said Sylvain Laflamme, chairman of the board of Fqsida. “This merger comes at the right time and enables us to promote our joint vision: Together let’s build a world without AIDS or HIV”.

The Farha Foundation spearheads the fight against HIV/AIDS. Over the past 25 years, it has distributed close to 10 million dollars to some 76 organizations in Quebec that provide care and services to people living with HIV/AIDS, along with prevention and education programmes.

We are proud of this alliance and happy to renew, in this way, our commitment to the communities of Quebec. The combined experience of our two foundations will contribute to an even better response to the many issues in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

Pre-hiring questionnaires: an illegal but common practice!

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PRE-HIRING QUESTIONNAIRES: AN ILLEGAL BUT COMMON PRACTICE! 
February 15, 2017

Today you can be refused a job after stating in a pre-hiring questionnaire that you are living with HIV or another chronic ailment, even though you do not represent any risk for those around you.

The pratiqueillegale.com web campaign launched by Fqsida in May last highlighted the use, particularly in the Quebec health network, of these discriminatory questionnaires that are clearly condemned by the law.

The online petition calling for the elimination of these illegal questionnaires in the network’s establishments ended on the 31st of January. The signatures were sent to COCQ-SIDA so as to support its efforts to finally end this hiring discrimination and simply have the law respected.

Fqsida – A new director

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A NEW DIRECTOR FOR THE FQSIDA
February 15, 2017

We are happy to announce that Baya Touré has been appointed as general director of Fqsida. Baya knows the various issues linked to funding the fight against HIV and will help to give the Foundation a new impetus in an increasingly difficult context for member organizations, particularly with the budget cuts at the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC).

Key populations

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KEY POPULATIONS
February 15, 2017

In the current dynamic of the HIV/AIDS epidemic at the global level, the communities most exposed to the virus are male and female sex workers, men who have sexual relations with other men and injectable drug users. Because of the discrimination and even criminalization they are subjected to, these persons are, in fact, 10% to 24% more liable to be infected by HIV than the general population. What is at issue here is the limited access to prevention and care when their sexual practices or drug use are condemned by society and even the State. According to the terms of reference of the United Nations these are « key » populations in the epidemic.

Source : Pulsation – June 2016 – Coalition PLUS

The blog « Je suis séropo »

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THE BLOG « JE SUIS SÉROPO »
February 15, 2017

This is a space for words and thoughts on the reality of people living with HIV. The aim of this blog is to help reduce the stigmatization and discrimination against them using a personal approach through which the authors promote the values of mutual respect and solidarity, and positive attitudes towards people living with HIV.

Jacques, spokesman of the “I am HIV-positive” campaign, recently published on the blog a very good post on the question of testing, one which is so intimate and, at the same time, has collective relevance.

Excerpt – « First there was a time when knowing or not knowing had little importance, because the only message that people with AIDS received was: we cannot do anything for you, you are going to die.

Then there was a time when knowing would have made a difference, but we did not know that. We did not know that difference, so we developed approaches for identifying the moment when it was preferable to begin the treatments to help us live longer.

Now, we are at the time when it is clearly established that the earlier we know that we are infected, the sooner we can begin treatment that will yield many benefits for the rest of our lives.”

Read the entire post (in French only) on jesuisseropo.org

Federal funding : What future for the fight against HIV?

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FEDERAL FUNDING FOR THE FIGHT AGAINST HIV
February 15, 2017

The Fqsida member organizations affected by the federal cuts, together with their Canadian counterparts, are pursuing their efforts to have their funding maintained and to obtain an in-depth review of the way Ottawa funds the fight against HIV.

At a time when ending the pandemic seems technically possible, the Federal Government’s lack of vision is to be deplored.

In this highly precarious context, your support for the fight against HIV in Quebec makes an even greater difference. Your one-time donations are also very precious to us! Thank you!

GEIPSI: WHAT FUTURE FOR THE FIGHT AGAINST HIV?

Yvon Couillard is the general director of GEIPSI, a Montreal organization working with a highly marginalized clientele: people living with HIV/Aids or the Hepatitis C virus and who present a profile of homelessness, drug abuse and, sometimes, mental illness. The interview he gave us casts a worrying light on the future of the fight against HIV in Canada.
Federal funding represents 45% of the budget of GEIPSI. For Yvon, the priority is clear: the day centre must be maintained. However, the loss of federal funding would mean eliminating one of the two practitioner posts, reduced services and shorter opening hours.

For now Yvon is waiting for a response to his request for a transitional budget, which, when granted, enables the organizations concerned to keep receiving funding for a year, after which their directors have to present their strategic funding plan. The cuts planned by Ottawa are in no way called into question and the organizations are asked to find for themselves the money they need for their activities!

The situation is particularly worrying since Ottawa does not seem to have any vision on the fight against HIV and Hepatitis C. In Quebec, for example, organizations working with injectable drug users (who are among the key population groups), homeless persons or women (other than sex workers) are mostly threatened by the federal cuts. There does not seem to be any strategy to replace the services threatened by the cuts!

Yvon knows he can count on the mobilization of the community movement for the fight against HIV to obtain federal funding for 2018-2022 for the threatened organizations. However, he does not hide the concern of his team and his beneficiaries.