The HIV/AIDS and viral hepatitis epidemics pose a burden to public health in Europe and disproportionately affect people who use drugs (PWUD) and other vulnerable populations that lack access to health services. The Correlation Network, as the lead network, in partnership with Eurasian Harm Reduction Association, EuroNPUD, Free Clinic, Podane Ruce, LILA Milano, Asociacion Bienestar y Desarrolo, IGTP/ICO, ISGlobal, Foundazinone Villa Maraini and in collaboration wih DPNSEE, ReGeneration, ARAS Foundation, and AIDS Action Europe, implements the BOOST project to contribute to improving the health of affected communities and public health in Europe in general.
The main aim of the BOOST project is to enhance the implementation of high-quality community-based communicable disease services as part of a comprehensive, people-centred and integrated harm reduction approach in four key areas:
- INFORM: collection of information and data on community-based services for PWUD
- IMPROVE: organisation of capacity building in the field of communicable disease
- SUPPORT: enhancing scale-up of integrated community-based good practices
- CONNECT&ACT: consolidating PWUD networks and fostering advocacy interventions
At the core of the BOOST project are three European harm reduction networks with support of the European Network of People who Use Drugs – as the involvement of and cooperation with affected communities is a core and vital element of this application. This ensures a wide range of experience, access different risk populations, covering all EU MS and neighbouring regions. Professionals will engage in data collection, exchange, capacity building, mutual coaching and learning and implementation of good practice models.
The BOOST project will provide data on the availability and quality of communicable disease services for PWUD, more community-based organisations will provide access to these services, capacities of service providers will be improved and the results of the project will be disseminated and advocated among a wide range of stakeholders.
DPNSEE will support EHRA implementing project activities aimed to strengthen and consolidate existing networks of harm reduction service organizations to support and boost the implementation of community-based and community-led best practices in the field of HIV, viral hepatitis, STIs – and where relevant TB – prevention, treatment and care for People Who Use Drugs at European, national and local level. More specifically:
- Strengthen and consolidate networking, cooperation and advocacy at the European level to boost the implementation of community-based and community-led best practices in the field of HIV/HCV/HBV prevention, treatment and care for People Who Use Drugs.
- Support community-based and community-led harm reduction services in developing and implementing effective advocacy plans at national/local level to boost the implementation of community-based best practices in the field of HIV/HCV/HBV prevention, treatment and care for People Who Use Drugs.
- Translating project findings, outputs and outcomes, in particular those related to monitoring and evaluation in other project components, into policy briefings, recommendations and policy dialogue meetings
The project will last for three years, from January 2023 to December 2025.
BOOST Project is founded by the EU4Health programme of the European Union, under the Action Grants to support the implementation of best practices in community-based services for HIV, AIDS, viral hepatitis and sexually transmitted infections.
Representatives from the BOOST project implementation organisations – C-EHRN, EHRA, EuroNPUD, and DPNSEE – met in Amsterdam on 30 and 31 January 2024 to finalize the European Advocacy Strategy. Read more>>>.
- As part of the BOOST project, a Digital Skills Training Course for harm reduction organisations working in the area of HIV and viral hepatitis will be held over the course of 4 weeks, between February 26th and March 23rd, 2024. Read more>>>.
- The Drug Policy Network South East Europe (DPNSEE) organised two regional online dialogues as part of the BOOST project. Read more>>>.
- DPNSEE President Nebojša Djurasović and Executive Director Milutin Milošević participated at the first meeting of the BOOST Project in Rome 13 – 14 of February. Read more>>>.