A Brief History
We started out, in a very small way, in 1995 with a few men meeting once a month at a community health centre. Over the next year Straight Arrows was formed, and incorporated. Our initial target group was straight men, but over the next year or so it became apparent that in heterosexual groups, HIV is a disease that carries over, in social ramifications, to partners and children as well. Subsequently, we also saw that the many support needs, particularly of other positive parents were not being met by any of the existing services. Straight Arrows found itself filling these gaps and now encompasses HIV+ heterosexual men, women, children, and their families, as well as other positive parents.
During this time we were also on the move, initially obtaining some office space in a derelict maternity wing of the Alfred hospital, staffed, at first, a couple of days a week by volunteers. In early 1998 we obtained some initial funding from the Department of Human Services, having previously been reliant on the occasional BBQ. In October 2000, now with a couple of nearly full time employees, we moved to a small, but new(!) office in Fairfield House, again part of the Alfred hospital. We still maintain an organisational philosophy of HIV affecting both an individual and their family, including partners and children, and that the issues should be dealt with in that context, and in a friendly, positive environment.
You can hear an mp3 audio of out history here.
Have a look at our Annual Reports to see what we’ve been up to.
Annual Report 2015-2016
Annual Report 2014
Annual Report 2013
Annual Report 2008
Straight Arrows maintains the Michael Heatherill Support Fund, which receives donations and directed grants for support activities. This fund is named for our founding president, who had also been active in the Heamophilia community and PLWHA, prior to his death in 1997.
We also auspice an antiretroviral fund called ARV Access, to assist global HIV+ activists with the cost of their treatments.