We Are Meridian:
We are a community-controlled, peer-led organisation that provides health and social support services to our community.
We celebrate diversity, strengthen community and empower individuals to live their best lives.
Community, health and action are the core of Meridian and how we work.
We bring our community together to celebrate and nurture the rich diversity within our communities and to strengthen our collective resilience against the adverse effects of stigma, discrimination, and marginalisation. We value our legacy and history as an organisation established and led by volunteers in response to the HIV epidemic, and we are committed to ensuring our communities, volunteers, members, and allies remain central to our work.
We are holistic in our approach to improving the health and wellbeing of our community members. We recognise the importance of safety, security, and connection to individual fulfillment. We know that our communities are diverse – our health needs are not all the same. Our person-centered programs and services recognise that there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to improving health and wellbeing. At Meridian, we build our services around the goals, needs, and experiences of our clients.
We are fierce advocates for our communities. We stand up and raise our voices when we see discrimination and injustice, and we take action to ensure the needs of our communities are being met.
We use peer-based, evidence-informed approaches to develop and deliver effective programs and services that respond to the needs of our communities.
Our values are at the foundation of who we are, and they guide how we work with our communities and our partners.
Our communities are strong, and our approaches amplify the strengths of our community members to achieve the best possible outcomes.
Our team represents the diversity within our communities. We are experts in our fields, but we also bring our lived experience to our roles to deliver relevant and compassionate services to our communities.
At Meridian, we create safe spaces so that everyone can bring their whole selves to our services and be part of a bigger community.
We are representatives of the communities we serve. We use our lived experience to lead the way in providing safe, inclusive, compassionate, and professional services.
We empower our community members by giving them the support they need to build resilience and improve their health and wellbeing.
We respect and draw from the unique experience, expertise, and skills of our communities, partners, and stakeholders. We are stronger together.
- People living with and impacted by HIV.
- People of diverse sexualities and sexual identities, including people who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer, pansexual, and asexual.
- Men who have sex with men.
- People of diverse gender identities, including people who are trans, gender diverse, and nonbinary.
- People at risk of HIV, STIs, and other BBVs, including sex workers, people who inject drugs, and people in custodial settings.
- Intersecting communities with lived experience of disability, including psychosocial disability.
- Intersecting communities who are also Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and people from diverse cultural backgrounds, including those who have sought asylum.
- Organisations who work with our communities and have shared goals and objectives.
How We Work
- We recognise the commitment made by communities and governments in Australia and globally to create a world without HIV transmission and recognise the importance of working with community partners to achieve this goal.
- We recognise the central role we play in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Intersex and Queer (LGBTIQ+) communities. We work with other partner organisations to ensure LGBTIQ+ people access services, have their human rights recognised, are a valued part of the community and live without discrimination or stigma.
- We provide practical support to the communities we work with, embedding our programs and services in the broader ACT community and locating them in environments and spaces that communities own and support.
- We acknowledge and value the knowledge and expertise that comes from lived experience, employing peer-based approaches to share this expertise. In using these approaches, we commit to nurturing and supporting individuals and communities to reach their potential.
- We complement our peer-based approach with an evidence-based approach to ensure our programs and services are founded on the latest research and respond to the emerging needs of the communities we work with.
- We contribute to policy development processes and undertake advocacy to ensure the issues affecting the communities we work with are a priority for the community, the ACT and the country.
- We value the legacy and the history of Meridian as an organisation established and led by volunteers and commit to ensuring volunteers, members and allies continue to be central to the work of Meridian now and into the future.
- We value the work of other partners working on the issues we care about. We enter partnership arrangements with a commitment to collaborate, recognise expertise, build capacity and nurture professional and supportive relationships.
- We recognise the importance of sustainability, including ensuring Meridian runs professionally and sustainably, and we build capacity in the organisation and the communities we work with.