Formed as a not-for-profit in 1998, Positively Living has always held to its mission of improving the lives of vulnerable persons through advocacy, counseling, socialization, case management and support.
Persons Living With Aids (PWA) have always been the primary recipients of the services of Positively Living and the agency continues to dedicate much of its resources to meeting the multiple needs of persons coping with the disease. Positively Living has undergone many changes throughout its ten year history including a brief name change to Parkridge Harbor.
Services were expanded over the last decade to include housing, recovery support and case management and the name was changed to emphasis the broadening service array. The name has officially been returned to Positively Living to reflect the proud history of the agency as a pioneer in serving persons dealing with HIV/AIDS.
"We are proud of the agency’s history as an AIDS service organization and we want to honor this legacy by restoring the original name which reflects our efforts to improve the lives of the persons we serve everyday" said Steve Jenkins, executive director since 2006.
There are two programs operated by Positively Living which are available to the HIV/AIDS community. The first service available to the persons with HIV/AIDS is the Housing Opportunities for Person With AIDS (HOPWA) program. These services are available to positive individuals living in Knoxville and East Tennessee.
"The primary emphasis of the HOPWA program is to assist persons in obtaining and maintaining housing," said Leslie Blevins, HOPWA Coordinator. "We want to keep you in your home and keep you healthy and we will do what we can to advocate on your behalf and get you resources".
Positively Living also operates 24 on-site apartments located at its facility in Knoxville. The apartments are available to persons suffering with a combination of HIV/AIDS, mental illness, addiction, disabilities and other catastrophic illnesses.
Don Miller, the Residential Coordinator, said "our primary goal is to provide safe, affordable, healthy housing to persons with multiple problems who have few housing options".
The agency hosts on-site recovery and support groups to help facilitate the process of maintaining healthy and fulfilled lives.