Smith, a Montana native (Twin Bridges) and local mental health therapist, is excited about the opportunity and challenges the position offers.
“We have the opportunity to do some real good here,” he said. “Despite popular belief, HIV is in Montana. There is a tremendous need to inform people at risk, help them protect themselves and to get people tested- to give them that crucial information about their health. There is also a need to support persons living with HIV here. I believe as a community we have a duty to assist those in need- and people with HIV are often economically disadvantaged. It’s about human dignity, and I want to help AIDS Outreach be at the forefront in Gallatin, Park and Madison counties.”
Smith has been involved in HIV/AIDS awareness work since 1994, and was an original member of the Montana Governor’s AIDS Advisory Council in 2000. He continues to serve on the Montana State Community Planning Group for HIV Prevention, and has written articles and abstracts for national publications and organizations and given numerous presentations on HIV/AIDS, especially HIV in rural communities.
Founded in 2006 and based in Bozeman, AIDS Outreach is a 501(c)3 organization offering free HIV testing, HIV prevention and educational materials, as well as assistance and a support group for HIV+ persons.
For more information, please call (406) 451-5718, write info@AIDSOutreachMT.org or visit http://www.AIDSOutreachmt.org