PAFPI offers a menu of psychological support and interventions for individual clients through group counseling or sessions. The counseling could be a group of people living with HIV and their counselors that allow connections through sharing experiences and understanding about life with the virus.
The experiences could include pain, issues, lessons, or even the darkest and unsettling fear of stigma and discrimination. There is couples’ counseling to help couples or partners with their relationship questions and concerns, including sexual health, antiretroviral adherence, disclosure, and others. With this, it is only apt to hold family development sessions or family counseling.
According to some PLHIV participants, involving parents and siblings in the sessions is essential. It would:
– Allow families to understand HIV stigma, discrimination, and disclosure;
– Make families realize that a family member with HIV can still lead an everyday and productive life and
– Families provide valuable psychological support to help clients cope with depression, anxiety, and other concerns.
“Family development sessions are important to provide the client a holistic life care plan,” explains Richard Bragado, M&E Officer, EPIC Project. Accordingly, families are the immediate group that could provide the client with a desirable and not-so-desirable experience when coping with HIV.
Bragado further explains that FDS, like other support groups, are facilitated by trained counselors. It ensures that thoughts, experiences, issues, and concerns are processed. “FDS provides space for the client and their families to talk in a safe space without judgment.”
More so, sharing experiences between families will help them realize the similarities and differences of their journey. “They can learn from each other and encourage one another,” Bragado ends.
Lastly, clients can access FDS, individual, and group psychological support interventions through PAFPI’s website or message PAFPI’s Facebook page.