Peer support

What are peer activities?

Peer support brings together people who are in a similar situation or have similar experiences. Positiiviset ry HivFinland provides peer support and opportunities to meet other people living with HIV and their loved ones. Peer support can mean the everyday exchange of experiences about medication or doctor’s appointments, but it can also mean in-depth discussions and reflection on the challenges of living with HIV. Peer support also means that, at Positiiviset ry HivFinland’s events, you can be yourself without being afraid of disclosing your HIV status.

Peer activities are based on similar experiences of the challenges of living with HIV. People with similar life experiences can support each other by sharing their experiences and helping each other move forward in life.

The stories of other people coping with HIV can be of great value if you experience fear of stigma, feel alone, and wonder how HIV affects your life and how you can learn to live with it. Another person living with HIV who has experienced similar feelings may well be more understanding and can find it easier to accept another person in a similar situation. Shared experiences can increase mutual understanding. Peer support is based on shared experiences, life experience and the wisdom that comes from them.

Peer activities are based on volunteering, confidentiality, and mutual respect.

You can join the peer activities as you are. You can say as much about yourself and your life as you want. You can participate in peer activities and meet with Positiiviset ry HivFinland’s staff members and peers under your own name, anonymously or with a pseudonym or nickname. No one’s personal experiences, personal data or other information will be shared outside the peer meetings.

The peer activities provide a place to talk and share experiences related to HIV and living with HIV, as well as anything else at all. During the various meetings and activities, participants decide for themselves what topics they want to discuss. You can join us for peer activities, to talk about HIV and get peer support for living with HIV, or just come along and spend time doing something fun with your peers.

In peer activities, we do our best to listen to and respect all participants. Everyone has their story and individual perspectives, and the diversity of experiences and people involved in peer activities is a great resource.

Peer meetings

Positiiviset ry HivFinland organises peer meetings for everyone who is living with HIV as well as their loved ones. You can also visit the association’s meeting place and take part in peer activities with a partner or with children. Some of the meetings and events are open to all, while others are targeted at more specific groups based on gender or age, for example.

Positiiviset ry HivFinland’s peer meetings are usually open meetings that you can join with an open mind and where the topics discussed are decided in the moment according to the requests and wishes of the participants. Your participation in the discussions and sharing of experiences is up to you. You can share your own experiences and thoughts as much as you want.

Activities and events

For a list of current events, courses and activities, click here.

Peer meetings are also organised online, and some meetings are organised as hybrid meetings, allowing you to participate either in person or remotely. Remote and hybrid meetings are held on either the Zoom or Discord platforms.

You can subscribe to our newsletter to receive a monthly summary of events for that month in your email inbox. Events are also announced on social media and on the meeting place notice board.

With the exception of Tuesday cafés, events usually require advance registration for catering purposes. You can register conveniently on the website, but it can also be done at the meeting place, by email or by phone.

For more information on all our activities and meetings, you can also call our office at +358 (0)9 692 5441 or send an email to

Tuesday café

The Tuesday café is a weekly peer meeting at Positiiviset ry HivFinland’s meeting place in Helsinki, where everyone can participate just as they are. At the Tuesday café, you can meet other people living with HIV, their loved ones and Positiiviset ry HivFinland’s staff.

You don’t need to register in advance for the Tuesday café – you can just show up! Food and coffee prepared by volunteers are served from 5 pm. Cooking is a fun activity to do together, and you can join the cooking volunteers by letting the meeting place staff know. After the meal, you can stay to chat, play cards or just hang out in the common areas until 8 pm.

The Tuesday cafés sometimes include discussions on specific topics or other activities, such as knitting groups. Any special events will always be announced in the events calendar on the website and on our social media accounts.

Meeting place

Positiiviset ry HivFinland’s office and meeting place is located in the centre of Helsinki, at Malminkatu 24 C 33 in Kamppi. The meeting place hosts weekly peer meetings and is open to everyone on weekdays from 10 am to 4 pm, and on Tuesdays until 8 pm.

Directions to the meeting place

Public transport connections to the office are excellent. The nearest stops include the Kamppi metro and bus stations and the Kampintori tram stop, which is about 180 metres from the office. Due to construction work, there is no working escalator from the Kamppi metro station to the Runeberginkatu side of the station, so you will instead have to take the escalator to the Kamppi shopping centre. Coming from the Kamppi shopping centre, you can either exit the centre to Fredrikinkatu, or continue on the bottom floor of the centre to the Sähkötalo side and exit through the Sähkötalo doors to Malminrinne.

The gate to Malminkatu 24 C is near the Helsinki Synagogue and the entrance gate to the school by the synagogue. At the gate, press the doorbell on the panel that says Positiiviset. When you hear the gate’s buzzer signal, you can open the gate and enter the courtyard. In the courtyard, continue to the right, where you will find the door to the Positiiviset office under the canopy. If no one is there to open the door when you arrive, ring the bell on the left side of the door. Note: The office cannot be accessed from the stairwell of the C block, so you have to pass the stairwell door to the canopy on the right.

What is the meeting place like?

Positiiviset ry HivFinland’s meeting place and office are around 200 square metres in size, located in the courtyard of a quiet city block on the first floor. The meeting place features private offices for staff members, as well as plenty of rooms for discussion, dining, and other activities. The heart of the meeting place is the kitchen, with a large table for around 15 people for communal meals and coffee breaks. In addition, the meeting place has a large lounge area with both sofas and chairs where you can spend time with others. There is a children’s play area in the lounge area. There is also a slightly smaller lounge which can be closed off by a door if you wish, where you can play cards at a table or have more private conversations in smaller groups or with staff. The venue has two gender-neutral bathrooms, one of which is moderately accessible.

Peer activities in the meeting place

The meeting place is open from 10 am to 4 pm on weekdays, and until 8 pm on Tuesdays. Positiiviset ry HivFinland’s staff are present at the meeting place, and you are free to visit the meeting place for a shorter or longer period of time.

The meeting place also hosts discussion groups, themed evenings and other events where you can meet peers living with HIV and their loved ones.

The dates and additional information for all events and activities organised at the meeting place are always posted on the website (, so check the website to see our upcoming events. You can subscribe to our Pikku-Poveri newsletter to receive a monthly summary of events for that month in your email inbox. Events are also announced on social media and on the meeting place notice board.

Who is present at the meeting place?

The Positiiviset ry HivFinland office is staffed almost every weekday by a executive director, a communications planner, a community worker and a peer support coordinator. The office also has part-time support from a Tuesday café manager, financial administrator and cleaner. Positiiviset ry HivFinland also sometimes takes on trainees, people on work try-outs or with wage subsidies.

Sometimes, meetings and events are also organised at the office during the day, with various partners and representatives of stakeholders present. Despite the meetings, you are always welcome to drop by for a coffee or any other reason.

Service is always available in Finnish and English 

All staff members at the Positiiviset ry HivFinland office speak Finnish and English. Some of our staff also speak Russian and Spanish. You can also come to the meeting place with an interpreter or a friend or family member who can help you. You can also arrange a meeting with Positiiviset ry HivFinland’s staff in advance, in which case the association will arrange interpretation services if necessary and take care of any costs for their use.