A thought leader that inspires people to empower and affirm their self-worth to create ripples of positive change.
LoveYourself Inc. (LY), is a community of volunteers which has been successful in reaching out to the key affected population of HIV and AIDS. It was established in 2011 with a mission of embracing and nurturing one's self-worth to inspire others to do the same and create ripples of positive change in the community and a vision of becoming a model community, empowering and affirming the self-worth of youth and MSM in the Philippines.
LY has been the home of many innovative and new approaches to reach key populations such as Project Preppy (Pre-exposure Prophylaxis), LoveYourself Caravan/PBSR, Smart-Safe-Sexy Continuum of Care Approach Project (3S) and Introduction of the First Community Run Testing and Treatment Facility (4S) Project, #SafeSpaces Condom Promotion and Distribution Program Victoria by LoveYourself, the first Transgender Health and Wellness Community Center in the Philippines and most recently - introduction of HIV Self Screening (#SelfCare) in the Philippines to name a few.
LY has several innovations in the pipeline, such as expansion of #SelfCare, #ChampionCommunityCenters and other innovations especially with the challenges in the time of COVID19 pandemic like XPress Refill and iCon (telemedicine).
LY partnered with DOH-RITM in many innovative programs such as 3S (Smart Safe and Sexy) where the power of volunteerism is harnessed by creating "change agents" from the community reaching other members of the community through awareness and encouraging high risk clients to take ownership of their sexual health by regular testing every 3-6 months if negative and early treatment if positive.
LY has a long and fruitful partnership with Pilipinas Shell Foundation since 2012, it has has grown and developed with PSFI supporting LY through technical assistance, logistics, finances, and overall management of LoveYourself Community Centers.
LoveYourself Inc. is proud of its 10 LoveYourself Branded Community Centers, 2 Private Clinic and manages 30 Champion Community Centers safe space for young and working population who are engaging in risky behavior.
For the LY community centers, having a cumulative rate of 150-200 clients daily with 12-14% reactive rate, the centers contributes to 42% of all the newly diagnosed PLHIVs reported in Metro Manila and 20% in the whole country for since 2016 to present proving that LY has a strong understanding of the Philippine context with regard to HIV and AIDS and key populations (MSM, TG, YKP and PWID). These efforts demonstrate a tremendous impact in bridging the gaps in the HIV continuum of care, with the objective of scaling up HIV testing and linking the newly diagnosed PLHIVs to treatment and care, eventually leading to reduced incidence of loss to follow up.
Since its launching, LY Anglo as the main treatment centers and the rest of the 6 as satellite centers has already diagnosed over 40,000 clients yearly. Of the total number of newly diagnosed PLHIVs, 7,300 were enrolled to LoveYourself Anglo treatment while the remaining were referred to RITM or other treatment hubs for enrolment making LY the second highest PLHIV clients enrolled facility. LoveYourself Anglo is currently being positioned as the first ever community run one stop shop - having prevention-to-treatment services. It aims to create a social enterprise-self-sustaining model.
LY has gained momentum in its implementation of the Philippines Business Sector Response to HIV (PBSR) and School Caravan Programs with PSFI. To date, 650, companies have been engaged through advocacy, 250 companies have been assisted in the drafting of their HIV in the workplace policy, over 100,000 people reached through HIV 101, 84,945 people tested and got their results, 4,190 (6.34 %) reactive and those confirmed were linked to treatment hubs and social hygiene clinics for further work up in preparation for treatment. 90 employee-trainers trained for HIV 101- Peer Education Training, and 68 received Basic Voluntary Counseling and Testing training. PBSR is a member of 7 Local AIDS Councils in the Cities of Manila, Quezon, Caloocan, San Juan, Batangas and Puerto Princesa. On another note, with its goal to reach the Youth to promote awareness and reduce stigma and discrimination, Caravan program has reached over 110 schools and universities testing more than 10,000 young people in the last 4 years.
In the last quarter of 2014, the LY started work on community system strengthening through human rights and advocacy programs under the guidance of the ISEAN HIVOS, the regional partner of LY by engaging new blood through numerous fora and peer meetings and activities then providing capacity building, monitoring and tracking outreach workers and grooming them to develop their own program in their respective locality, bringing about the birth of the several community based organizations such as Project H4 in Puerto Princesa, who eventually opened a community center called Amos Tara and forged a long-term partnership with DOH IV-B MIMAROPA.
In the area of Advocacy, LY has created several efforts in making sure that their efforts to raise the bar in the HIV continuum of care such participation in the PNAC consultations on the revision of RA 8504 and approval of the new law RA11166, technical assistance with the development of SOGIE tool kit and Trans Health module.
LY continues to develop advocacy materials and communication strategies to address and respond to issues and needs of the times. Protect the Goal Campaign and #StayNegatHIVe Campaign with Rappler and Dentsu focusing on stigma and discrimination reduction that were launched recently received seven national and international awards for campaign effectiveness and impact such as the Boomerang and Anvil Awards. In 2016, the partnership also implemented several regional campaigns such as TestMNL with APCOM and very recently a project with UNAIDS and 2015 Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach - the #Live2LUV campaign.
In 2018 LY is chosen as the sub recipient of the Philippine Global Fund ACER program where in LY is asked to develop and establish 15 community centers which is based on the LoveYourself community centers model. The community-based organization partners are provided support for their operational costs outreach and refurbishment of the community centers. Each community centers offer a sexual health prevention package including HIV testing and STI testing for free. Some of the community organizations have doctors and offer treatment at the same time while others are referring clients to Social Hygiene Clinics in their locality.
In 2018 also, LY in partnership with Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAO) implemented the Sustainability of Key Population Programs in Asia (SKPA). It has a goal of providing not just community system strengthening but also introducing advocacy, campaigns, innovations, and support towards sustainability of the services of CBO partners. LY creates national programs and campaigns on awareness and promotion of combination prevention, treatment as prevention and other innovations. A recent example is the National HIV Prevention month last July-August 2020 gathering almost 5 million impressions and reach online through the SKPA Philippines Grant. AIDS HealthCare Foundation Philippines (AHF) also partnered with LY this year to the present to augment in outreach, events and treatment of indigent PLHIVs.
In 2019, due to the very high incidence of anxiety disorders and depression among the young LGBT community. LY decided to create its own mental health program called Flourish by LoveYourself. Flourish aims to provide counseling and life coaching to people with mild depression and anxiety. Flourish offers life coaching and group counseling to our clients. In partnership with Mental Health Ph, a local CBO, LY also has created campaigns on mental health. Aside from the group counseling program, LY initiated self-help programs such as music therapy, art therapy, poetry reading and other forms of coping support for people in distress.
In 2020 LY was chosen as the sub recipient of the Philippine Global Fund PROTECTS with PIlipinas Shell Foundation as its PR. LY is asked to scale up its CHAMPION COMMUNITY CENTERS initiative by creating a total of 34 Champion Centers and CBO. The community-based organization partners are provided support for their operational costs outreach and refurbishment of the community centers. Each community center offers a sexual health prevention package including HIV testing and STI testing for free. Some of the community organizations have doctors and offer treatment at the same time while others are referring clients to Social Hygiene Clinics in their locality. LY has also led KP specific initiatives including the TG activations with Medical Professionals, School Administrations, etc.; for YKP, LY spearheaded a myriad of activities involving Sangguniang Kabataan (Youth Federation), Schools, and other youth lead CSOs; for PWIDs, several learning group sessions and consultations has also been done specifically in Cebu City. LY was also assigned to provide the Administrative and Human Resource including payroll of 380 field staff and community center officers hired for the project.
In 2021 LY was selected as a grantee of Meeting Targets and Maintaining Epidemic Control (EpiC) is a global project funded by the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), which is dedicated to achieving and maintaining HIV epidemic control. LY community centers operations are supported by this grant.