Positive Leadership Development Institute Australia (PLDI™ Australia) is a new collaborative endeavour in the HIV community response in Australia. PLDI™ Australia is a unique community service partnership that aims to build the resilience and leadership capacities of people living with HIV (PLHIV) in Australia.

The Institute is an international collaboration with a similar program operating in Canada and is based upon the principles of the greater involvement and meaningful engagement of people living with HIV.  The Institute is focused upon placing people living with HIV as central and vital in the role towards ending HIV.

Since signing an international bi-lateral intellectual trade agreement and forming in July 2014, theprogram has gained considerable support from the HIV sector, business and organisational partners.

In total 22 agencies from across Australia have committed to the partnership to increasing leadership  skills, resilience capacity and emotional intelligence among men and women from all walks of life and  from across Australia. PLDI Australia is a response to evidence that these skills are vital for people living with HIV to be able to respond in a healthy and sustained way to the HIV stigma and discrimination which  they face on a day to day basis.

“You have assembled a mighty team to support the further development of PLDI™ Australia  both in Australia and New Zealand. We are very impressed in Canada by your partnership  in taking this work forward. We are pleased and proud to be your international partners in this important work” Rick Kennedy, PLDI™ graduate and Executive Officer of the Ontario AIDS

Early results show increased and sustained levels of resilience capacity and numerous examples of how individuals living with HIV are utilising what they have learnt in their personal, professional and community lives.

“The fact that so many organisations have recognisedthe need to build resilience and leadership among PLHIV is testament to the appreciation of what is needed to challenge the ongoing stigma and discrimination that PLHIV face. It is with the as yet untold gratitude of the many PLDI Australia graduates, who will benefit from this new program, that I thank the partners who have come on board and that are listed as our inaugural 2014/15 PLDI Australia partners.”

Brent Allan, PLDI™ graduate and Executive Officer of Living Positive Victoria

PLDI™ Australia is expected to offer a minimum of four leadership courses a year at various locations around Australia to ensure HIV positive people everywhere can access this training, development and skills building in herent in the course. Graduates are encouraged to go back into their local community to practice and share their new found or better developed leadership and resilience skills both in the HIV sector and further afield.

Some of the 35 PLDI™ Australia graduates share their experience...

“Attending PLDI has seen a monumental shift in my personal space, sharing the lived experience of PLHIV with the fellow graduates was inspiring. The skills developed through the course have transferred across to many facets of my life; I find myself a much calmer and stronger leader, I have a new found drive and energy and most importantly this has created a momentum of positive involvement within HIV community within Australia as a leader and agent for change.” Paul Baines, Western Australia, PLDI Graduate Oct 2014

“Prior to the workshop I had only experienced living with HIV from a gay male perspective and to hear, first hand, what challenges confront women in Australia who are HIV positive was an education I needed to have.The PLDI program is now playing an increasingly significant part in the process of empowering those living with HIV/AIDS to stand up, be visible, relevant and responsible not only to those they lead within their own community but to the much broader effort toward eventual HIV eradication” Tony Judson, Victoria, PLDI Graduate Oct 2014

“PLDI reminded me about ‘choice’; what you are able to do and when you are able to do it. It regenerated and reinvigorated me and enabled me to re-engage as an advocate and activist.” Cath Smith, Victoria, PLDI Graduate Nov 2013

“PLDI has been instrumental in further developing my leadership skills. Every HIV positive person thinking about being more active in the community should have this experience. I have been able to directly use skills developed in the workshop in my day-to-day work.” Jesse Hooper, Queensland, PLDI Graduate Aug 2013

“Through the PLDI I learned the power of leadership, my own personal style but also the rich diversity of styles and the legitimacy of each and every individual in the movement for change. Most of all however, I am uplifted and energised by the rich, loving joy (even in the presence of sorrow) of my fellow participants and the potential yet to be realised in our leaders of tomorrow, for this my gratitude knows no bounds.” Bill Paterson, Northern Territories, PLDI Graduate Nov 2013

PLDI graduates are available for further comment and interview.  New partners are welcome: individuals, community organisations, businesses or agencies are encouraged to contact Brent Allan on 03 9863 8733 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to discuss partnership options.

pdfMedia Release - 18 February 2015