Friends For Life Friends For Life homepage DONATE TODAY
Drop Down Menu



What is advocacy?

Advocacy - Active support of an idea or cause
Self-Advocacy - The process of people speaking out for themselves, thereby gaining or regaining control over their lives

Friends For Life has been involved in advocacy for persons living with HIV/AIDS for many years. From the early years of the organization when the advocacy efforts included educating the community about the needs of persons living with the disease to current activities, Friends For Life is the leader in HIV/AIDS advocacy efforts in the Mid-South. 

Friends For Life’s advocacy efforts have included working to educate local and state public officials about the needs of persons living with HIV/AIDS including:

  • Housing needs
  • AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP)
  • Supportive services needs
  • Treatment needs

A national leader in HIV/AIDS advocacy activities and advocacy training is the AIDS Foundation of Chicago. The website, Dose of Change, is a project of the of AIDS Foundation of Chicago  and is a place for AIDS advocates to build skills, share knowledge, and connect with one another. Dose of Change is a project made possible, in part, by generous support from AIDS United and the Levi Strauss Foundation.


Click here to learn the latest policy update.


National Minority AIDS Council (NMAC) Launches, Urges Action on ADAP!

The National Minority AIDS Council launched a new website,, to increase awareness of the crisis facing our nation’s AIDS Drug Assistance Programs. The site, part of NMAC’s ADAP Beyond the Numbers campaign, and supported by the MAC AIDS Fund, will feature videos and stories of real life ADAP clients who rely on the programs for their life-saving medications. will also provide tools to track the latest developments surrounding wait lists and other cost containment measures being instituted by states across the country.

Approximately 175,000 Americans rely on ADAP for their medications. But as of July 1, 2011, 13 states had instituted wait lists with over 8,600 individuals languishing on their rolls. Another 17 have enacted various so-called “cost containment” measures including reduced formularies, lowered financial eligibility and enrollment caps. NMAC hopes that will raise the profile of this critical issue and inspire action to fix the problem. 

Help NMAC achieve that goal by visiting today, submit your videos and sign-up for email/action alerts! In today’s political and economic climate, your support is needed to ensure that all HIV/AIDS programs, including ADAP get the funding they need!


Back to BasicsLessons From AIDS/HIV Advocacy Efforts

A new report analyzes the factors that helped patient advocates drive research into and drug development for HIV/AIDS, and tries to figure out whether there are lessons to be learned for other disease advocates.

The paper, called “Back to Basics: HIV/AIDS Advocacy as a Model for Catalyzing Change" is based on in-person and telephone interviews with activists, scientists, government officials and policy makers involved with the HIV/AIDS advocacy movement. It credits patient advocates with helping to implement regulatory changes that sped up access to investigational drugs and with ushering in an era where patients are taken seriously and their views represented on governmental and scientific committees.

Read more about this study at .


Dose of Change

Check out the Dose of Change Resource page on their website at and trainings. This page has links to presentations that provide more information about the role of advocacy. Click here to view a slide presentation on Political Strategy -


HIV/AIDS - Legal Issues

HIV Law and Policy ADA.GOV


Find Out More

The Gay Men’s Health Crisis

The San Francisco AIDS Foundation

National AIDS Treatment Advocacy Project

Building Movement Project