Living with HIV

The way people live with HIV has changed significantly since the 1980s. With medication you can now love a long and normal life with a HIV diagnosis. The Eddystone Trust is dedicated to providing a safe and empowering space for individuals living with HIV to connect, share experiences, and access vital information.

Whether you're newly diagnosed, living with HIV, or a supporter wanting to learn more, our aim is to offer comprehensive resources, guidance, and a sense of belonging. Through peer support, educational content, and stories of resilience, we strive to empower individuals to live their best lives while managing HIV.

Together, we can thrive, support one another, and redefine what it means to live well with HIV.

Have you been recently diagnosed HIV+? 

  1. If you're diagnosed with HIV, you'll have blood tests which will monitor the progress of the HIV. This will be a HIV viral load test – a blood test that monitors the amount of HIV virus in your blood. You will also have CD4 lymphocyte cell count – which measures how the HIV has affected your immune system. 
  2. Treatment, referred to as Anti-Retroviral Treatment (ART) can usually be expected to start straight away. This can be as simple as one or two tablets a day. 
  3. You can live well with successful HIV treatment reaching an Undetectable Viral Load. This will mean you are untransmittable, unable to pass HIV on to another person. This is referred to as U=U, Undetectable = Untransmittable. 

Living Well with HIV – What does this mean for me?

  1. You can expect to live as long as someone who is not HIV+ Great News! 
  2. Be sure to take your tablet as prescribed by you HIV consultant – this is referred to as Medication Adherence 
  3. Attend your appointments at the clinic – this plays a big part to living well with HIV 
  4. Look after your Mental Health – it is not unusual to experience low mood, anxiety, feel as if your concentration is impaired, and insomnia. (This list is not exhaustive) This could be a sign of depression – if this is the case chat to your clinic as they may have a professional you can talk to, if not they will be able to refer you to a specialist mental health service. To find services available in your area please visit Mental health charities and organisations - NHS (

Peer Support with The Eddystone Trust

Current Peer Support Sessions:

Positive connections for all. 

This is a mixed group and runs every Tuesday, excluding the last Tuesday of the month from 18:45 – 20:45. We welcome HIV+ people, this is a group that offers a ‘Real Peer Support experience’, where you can meet and discuss Living Well with HIV.   

Positive connections for men  

Held fortnightly on a Thursday from 19.00 – 20.30.  This group provides a space whereby Men can talk ALL things men!  A safe space and friendly group for HIV+ men in the Southwest.  

Positive Space for Positive Women  

Held on the last Tuesday of the month from 18.45 – 20.45, this group provides the opportunity to meet other HIV+ women for group discussion. It’s a safe, positive, and friendly space for women across the southwest. 


Positive connections newly diagnosed 
Positive connections for carers

How are the groups ran?

All our groups are available to HIV+ people living in the Southwest and are currently held online, are facilitated, have guest speakers and are a safe space for a check in as well as the opportunity to meet with other people to share experiences of living well with HIV.

All groups provide a safe space to meet other people that have a shared experience! 

That is a good enough reason to come along!  

If you haven’t been to a peer group before why not give it a try – it’s a great space to enjoy a couple of hours and support each other through our individual journeys and shared experiences, everybody is welcome even if it’s just to listen to others.   

To find out more about joining our groups email  

Peer Support Volunteering Opportunities

Click below to register for any
future peer support volunteering


Do you know about PEP and PrEP? Click here to learn about PEP and PrEP.

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If you want to learn more about HIV, HIV treatments and living well with HIV then visit click below.

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Contact Us

Click below to learn more about HIV testing and how you can access a free HIV home testing kit.

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