By Kristi Parker
WICHITA -Last year Positive Directions, a Wichita HIV-service organization, scaled back its services to focus solely on prevention and education. There have been a few changes in staff, an office move and various other things that come with such a change.
The dust seems to have settled around executive director Brett Hogan and now there is a new prevention person, titled Targeted Outreach Coordinator. The intent is to expand the organization’s prevention services and better serve the community.
“We want to be a stronger presence in the community so more manpower was needed,” explained Camille Gaddis, the new coordinator who started this month. “Having a second person allows us to be in multiple places during the day. One person can be in the office to answer phones and do testing while the other can be doing outreach or attend a meeting.”
As Targeted Outreach Coordinator, Gaddis’ duties are many. In order to connect with at-risk populations and provide education she intends to go to community events, support groups and health fairs.
She also plans on forming partnerships with individuals and other organizations in order to collaborate on events or create new programs. And she will be certified to administer HIV tests and provide counseling.
“Another part of the outreach I do is managing the social media accounts,” Gaddis said. “We just added Snapchat (pdikansas) so we can keep people updated on what’s new and they can ask questions without having to come in to the office.”
Prior to working at Positive Directions Gaddis worked at a local hospital as a Registered Nurse for three years. “I am deeply passionate about public health, disease prevention and community education. Coming from a medical background, I have a different perspective and approach than most people,” she said. “I have a natural desire to help others. My hope is for the entire city of Wichita to know who we are and be known as a place where people can feel safe.”
Positive directions is located at 416 Commerce St. #108. It can be reached at 316-263-2214 or through PDIKS.com. l