Positive Leadership Development Institute™ (PLDI™) Australia is a unique international collaboration between Canada and Australia to offer workshops run by HIV positive people for HIV positive people that focus on increasing resilience and leadership capacity. Following the success of the two pilot programs offered in Australia in 2013 PLDI™ Australia was officially formed at a signing event held during the 2014 International AIDS Conference.

In Canada the program is run through a partnership of the Pacific AIDS Network and the Ontario AIDS Network. Rick Kennedy, Executive Director of the Ontario AIDS Network (Canada), one of the collaborative partners in the development of the program welcomed PLDI™ Australia as an extension of the program.

“We are honoured to be entering into a partnership with our colleagues in Australia. They are leaders in fighting HIV stigma, and in advancing the principles of the Greater Involvement of people with HIV/AIDS. We can learn from each other as the PLDI™ leadership program continues to grow and makes a dramatic impact in Australia and in Canada.” says Kennedy.

“Graduation from the PLDI™ is a celebrated rite of leadership training for people living with HIV in Canada and it’s great we’re extending the family to include our HIV positive brothers and sisters in Australia.”

Living Positive Victoria’s Executive Officer, Brent Allan, sees PLDI™ Australia as essential for tapping into the growing role of HIV positive people in the community connecting a new generation of leaders with those already engaged with the HIV sector, to ensure people living with HIV continue to play a central and vital role in the HIV response.

“We have already seen some fantastic results from PLDI™ Australia graduates demonstrating the positive impact of the training on individual resilience levels and this is going to have a massive impact on our ability to build a stronger community of positive people,” says Allan.

PLDI™ Australia is currently being set-up to run nationally with the next training course being held in October 2014 in Victoria with 12 participants from across the country being selected out of the 20 applications received. There are opportunities for collaborating agencies or supporting businesses or community groups to become involved and interested parties and they are encouraged to contact PLDI™ Australia for a copy of the Partnership Prospectus.