As Western Canada’s largest AIDS organization, in the words of its mission statement, the BC Person’s With AIDS Society (BCPWA) “exists to enable persons living with Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome and Human Immunodeficiency Virus to empower themselves through mutual support and collective action.”
Founded in 1986, BCPWA has a membership of 4,200 HIV-positive full voting members with as many as 12,000 to 15,000 HIV-positive British Columbians accessing their services. The Society’s Board is composed entirely of HIV-positive members and all of its programs are operated by committees led by HIV-positive persons.
The BCPWA Society continues to be one the most effective individual advocacy resources available to HIV-positive persons in British Columbia and provides direct support in an array of services including a health care fund, products & treatments and counseling.
Each year the BCPWA produces and hosts the annual Scotiabank AIDS Walk which funds the Society’s Complementary Health Fund which reimburses their poorer members for expenses where provincial or other health care plans won’t – up to $55 each month.
The BCPWA also holds its annual AccolAIDS awards honouring outstanding achievements of individuals and organizations working in the BC AIDS movement.
For more information on the BCPWA and the services they provide visit them online at http://www.bcpwa.org.