On May 4, 2015, the THRIVE SS was established to provide support to Black gay/bisexual men living with HIV in the Atlanta metro and a portal through which to share pertinent, lifesaving information and build community.
THRIVE SS is a 501c3 nonprofit organization that created the Undetectables Model – a tiered peer support model that combines online support, traditional in-person support, and friend/social/ “Judy support” – to address issues that Black people are living with HIV face. In the United States, many people of color living with HIV have trouble reaching viral suppression or “Undetectable” status, disclosing their HIV status to partners, family, and friends, addressing their hierarchy of needs (shelter, employment, medical care) and gaining support. The mission of the THRIVE SS is to improve health equity for Black gay men living with HIV through direct support, advocacy, and building collective power.
Now nearly five years later, we have hosted hundreds of events, health forums and meetings, we have shot many HIV self-love and acceptance campaigns, we have increased membership to 945 Black gay/bisexual men and 250 Black women in the Atlanta metro area. We have been able to replicate this model in other high prevalence jurisdictions around the country (Tennessee, California, South Carolina, North Carolina and the District of Columbia). We hope that the amazing outcomes we have seen in Atlanta will be mirrored in cities like yours so that we can continue to reduce of the community viral load and by doing so reduce the numbers of new infections.