Community News

Lunch Positive volunteers trained in substance misuse awareness

Graham Robson May 23, 2016

In April, eighteen volunteers from Lunch Positive, the weekly lunch club for people with HIV, received training in understanding substance misuse.


The training was provided by Pavilions, the organisation providing drug and alcohol treatment and recovery services for people in Brighton & Hove.

Lunch Positive has developed a close link with Pavilions through regular outreach from the LGBT Brief Intervention worker, Gary Smith. The training has helped volunteers better understand the reasons and impact of substance misuse.

Lunch Positive volunteers provide a ‘listening ear’ to people who come to the HIV lunch club, and aim to support people to help themselves, and to find specialist services if needed in times of difficulty.

Gary Pargeter
Gary Pargeter

Gary Pargeter, Lunch Positive Service Manager, said: “This was an incredibly useful piece of training and has also strengthened our links with Pavilions. We know from our ongoing contact with the LGBT Brief Intervention service that people with HIV who also have substance misuse issues really benefit from greater understanding and empathy. This learning will help us continually improve and provide that.”

“HIV remains a complex challenge for many people, and other issues and life challenges can greatly affect how well HIV is managed. We’re hugely grateful to have such a diverse group of people who use the lunch club, and hope this will make it even more useful for them. Thanks also need to go to our fantastic volunteers for their interest and commitment. It was a great training session and we have been talking about what was learned and how to best use this ever since.”

The training was planned and undertaken with the support of Awards for All funding awarded to Lunch Positive.

For more information about Lunch Positive, click here: