Connect to Protect (C2P) is a community-based group. They create outreach and awareness events to support the HIV/AIDS Mid-South community.
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital created C2P in 2008. Its 25 partner agencies come from across Memphis. Partners include:
- AIDS service organizations
- Community groups
- Faith-based groups
- Local and state governments
- Federally qualified health centers
- Members of at-risk groups
All of these groups work together to prevent and treat HIV.
C2P provides a safe space for members to explore ways to prevent and treat HIV in youths. Members have learned and shared best practices. They also suggest changes to programs and policies. C2P aims to remove barriers to HIV prevention and treatment. This group is helping improve the future of HIV in the city.
Ending the HIV Epidemic
C2P has a plan that addresses youth’s barriers to:
- Preventing exposure
- Obtaining medical care for those newly diagnosed with HIV
- Moving to adult care
As issues are known, C2P members talk with those who can help. Together, they change policies and practices related to:
- HIV disclosure
- Timelines for HIV tests
- Social factors
- Adherence to treatment
C2P members are working together to build a community-driven Ending the HIV Epidemic (EHE) Memphis initiative. More than 65 partner agencies have created a roadmap to achieve zero new HIV infections by the year 2030.
St. Jude HIV Program
C2P is part of the St. Jude HIV program—the area’s chief provider for children, adolescents and young adults with HIV. This nationally recognized program has an endowed Arthur Ashe Chair in Pediatric AIDS Research. The program works closely with community medical and social service agencies.
Community networks and outreach efforts created by St. Jude have decreased HIV and sexually transmitted infection rates. The alliances continue to improve the health and well-being of people in the Mid-South.