HIV and AIDS continue to pose a threat to the general population in the Philippines. More than 10 patients are diagnosed with the disease everyday. The Philippine government together with the private organizations and individual advocates are working hand in hand to strengthen the awareness and prevention programs.
The Project Red Ribbon Care Management Foundation, Inc. a non stock, non-profit foundation registered under the Securities and Exchange Commission of the Philippines, is an HIV and AIDS advocacy foundation composed of advocates, supporters and persons living with HIV (PLHIV)
To improve the quality of life of persons living with HIV through awareness, resources, treatment, care and support.
To be the driving force of wellness within the Philippine HIV and AIDS community.
The Foundation evolved in September 1, 2011 when the first blog entry, I Have AIDS! was posted in Living with HIV in the Philippines which was set up by Pozziepinoy. It initially served as a diary of his HIV journey but later on transformed into a site where people asked questions about HIV and AIDS, shared stories about HIV testing and personal journey with HIV. It also became a channel where people can see a listing of HIV testing sites and HIV and AIDS Treatment Hubs in the country as well as posts about news and current events happening in the country. To date, the blog which has become the official site of the Foundation is the number one HIV blog in the country, reaching to about 5 thousand readers everyday all over the world.
In 2012 The Love Fund, a donation based entity to help the indigent persons living with HIV (PLHIV) with needed medical support for lab tests, hospital bills and medicines, was created. It is a partnership between Pozziepinoy and Dr. Rossana A. Ditangco, the head of the AIDS Research Group of the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM- ARG) to assist clients in the treatment hub. Months after, the Foundation patched up with the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) for their PLHIV clients with outstanding hospital bills and medical needs.
When 2013 came, the Foundation grew bigger with the establishment of it’s online support group in Facebook. The Red Ribbon, as it was first called was named by Pozziepinoy and his friend Malcolm Brown who both managed the private online group. Months came by, Yomi Arojado joined the team and became one of the Online Managers of the Foundation’s support group. The Foundation’s initiatives started to grow not only in facebook but also in Twitter. To date, it has reached 1,000 members composed of PLHIV, advocates and supporters.
In mid 2013, Gerald Santos joined the group and became the Foundation’s first Care Manager after the establishment of the Care Assistance Program (CAP) for Hubs. In CAP, the Foundation provides counseling and hub guidance, and assists with the medical needs through The Love Fund. Later on, Jake Positive, an Iloilo based advocate joined CAP and resonated the program in the Visayas Region. The Foundation also forged a partnership with the Baguio Support Group with the help of Ryan Javier. During that period the Foundation’s HIV Hotline paved the way for the increased assistance for the program.
As TRR’s advocacy continued, more and more asked for assistance, thus the emergence of the Care Assistance Program for HIV Test. At that point, Marky Manlangit became the first Care Manager for CAP HIV Test. The program entails meeting clients outside the HIV testing facilities in preparation for the test, accompanying them inside until they receive their HIV test result and conducting post counselling and guidance.
At that time, all activities of the Foundation were focused on the key population affected by HIV in the Philippines. However, when David Fabros joined the group at the last quarter of 2013, he became the Foundation’s External Affairs Manager, reaching out to spread the news of it’s existence to people of stature in society, to enlighten and educate them about the HIV situation in the country.
The simultaneous activities of TRR -- the blog, The Love Fund, the FB and twitter online support groups, the Care Assistance Program for Hub and HIV Test, and the HIV Hotline all gave birth to the Care Management Program of the Foundation. Later in 2013, with the additional activities for PLHIV such as the Outreach Programs to HIV and AIDS Treatment Hubs, the TRR Support Group Talks, the P-Club, the TRR Peer Counselors Training, the monthly TRR gatherings and events, TRR was rebranded as The Project Red Ribbon Care Management Program.
In early 2014, as TRR included health and fitness for PLHIV as part of its care program, the Foundation partnered with Yoga for Life Foundation, iFitness Training and Regine Tolentino’s Dance Studios. The Care Program incorporated yoga, dancing, jogging, swimming and boot camp workouts. Partnerships with The Love Yourself strengthened TRR’s Care Program. Middle of the year, Boycuit, Outrage Magazine, University Student Council of the University of the Philippines, A Events and Pilipinas Shell Foundation forged an alliance with TRR. Also during that time, as part of it’s holistic approach to care, the Foundation started it’s skill workshops for PLHIV. In June, Roberto Figuracion and Carlos Montecarlo joined the team and became the latest online managers and HIV phone counselors.
In July 2014, the advocacy group became a SEC registered Foundation.
By 2015, The Foundation because the Official Communications partner of the Department of Health-National AIDS/STI Prevention and Control Program and the Care Partner of the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine - AIDS Research Group. Because of our Care Programs, the Foundation was recognized by the Department of Social Welfare and Development, the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation and the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office. We are also recognized by different local government agencies.
In 2016, we have been recognized by the Department of Health- Epidemiology Bureau and the Save the Children.