Harm Reduction Victoria (HRVic) is a not for profit, community organisation for people who use drugs.
HRVic does not condemn nor condone the use of drugs.
HRVic merely recognises that drug use happens and as such,
aims to reduce any possible harms associated
with that drug use.
HRVic is a health promotion organisation that is guided by the belief that any drug related harm should be treated as a health issue and not a criminal issue.
Our aim is to advance the health and wellbeing of people who use drugs by creating an environment in which individuals are empowered to realise their aspirations, meet their needs and participate fully in society.
Our membership, staff and supporters include current and former people who use drugs, their allies and their support networks and people who support the values and objectives of Harm Reduction Victoria.
We prioritise the issues and concerns of people who use drugs in all that we do within a community development framework.
The philosophy of harm reduction and advancing the health and human rights of people who use drugs guides all of HRVic’s work.
HRVic’s interventions are individually and collectively targeted, in order to promote a culture of safer drug use.
In 1987, in the face of a growing HIV epidemic,
a group of drug users, supported by their friends, families and allies established VIVAIDS- now Harm Reduction Victoria-
as an independent, user-driven, community based organisation.
Now funded primarily by the
Victorian Department of Health and Human Services,
HRVic provides peer driven and designed education and resources,
practical support, information and advocacy to
current and past users of illicit drugs,
their supporters and the services who work with them.
HRVic has often led the way in developing innovative approaches
to peer education and community development,
and has contributed to Australia having one of the lowest
HIV rates among injecting drug users in the world.
OUR GUIDING PRINCIPLES
Community Ownership and Accountability:
Harm Reduction Victoria is of and for our community. Through active engagement with our membership and constituent communities, Harm Reduction Victoria aims to identify and serve the needs of drug users in Victoria. We encourage a broad-based sense of ownership and involvement in all aspects of HRV’s operations.
Harm Reduction Victoria respects and represents all people who use drugs in Victoria, regardless of gender, sexuality, age, disability or ethnic group. We prioritise those at greatest risk of drug related harm and in particular people who inject drugs, due to the risk of blood borne virus transmission.
“Nothing about us without us”:
Harm Reduction Victoria asserts the right of people who use drugs to have a voice in decisions which directly affect our lives and to be involved in the response to drug use and associated harms in Victoria including drug related policies and programs.
Harm Reduction Victoria rejects all forms of arbitrary discrimination against people who use drugs. We believe that the stigma associated with drug use undermines human dignity and self-efficacy, and creates barriers to participation in the social, cultural and economic life of the community. We work towards the elimination of these destructive attitudes.
Harm Reduction Victoria is a health promotion organisation. We are guided by a belief that drug related harm should be treated as a health issue and not a criminal issue. Our aim is to advance the health and wellbeing of people who use drugs by creating an environment in which individuals are empowered to realise their aspirations, meet their needs and participate fully in society.
Partnerships and Collaboration:
In order to respond more effectively to the needs of people who use drugs, Harm Reduction Victoria is committed to pursuing partnerships and strategic alliances with other community sector organisations built on shared goals and trust.
Harm Reduction Victoria strives to be a model employer, to be accountable to our members and constituent communities for all of our actions, and to achieve optimal outcomes at all times.
For more comprehensive information,
Harm Reduction Victoria Strategic Plan here.
A world where all people are treated the same & have the same opportunities regardless of their drug of choice.
To work to advance the health, dignity and social justice of Victorians who use drugs.
To authentically represent the voices of and for Victorians who use drugs.
HRVic is the state member (Victoria's representitive) of the national network of drug user organisations, which is headed up by AIVL, our national peak body.
Our aim is to educate,
inform, support and advocate on behalf of all Victorians who use drugs,
& their allies.
HRVic seeks to improve the way people who use drugs are treated in the broader community as well as by the medical community & government services.
The philosophy of advancing the health & human rights
of people who use drugs guides all of our work.
HRVic’s interventions are individually & collectively targeted,
in order to promote a culture of safer drug use.
If the membership are the legs that carry the org,
the board of directors - the brains of HRVic, then the 15 permanent staff and over 150+ volunteers, are definitely the heart of the organisation.
From a variety of backgrounds, qualifications and experience, the HRVic team is made up of current and former people who use drugs giving HRVic the advantage in drug related health promotion and a truely unique peer-spective.