Gay Asian Pacific Alliance

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Organizational History

GAPA Community HIV Project (GCHP) is a non-profit, community-based organization whose mission is to stop the transmission of HIV and to support people living with HIV. GCHP was organized in 1989 by members of the HIV/AIDS Committee of the Gay Asian Pacific Alliance (GAPA), a social, political, and support organization of gay and bisexual men of Asian and Pacific Islander heritage. GCHP goals include providing education and prevention services to the public, and practical and emotional support of people living with HIV, their partners, their families, and their friends. Providing services in Cambodian, Cantonese, Mandarin, Tagalog, Vietnamese, and French, as well as English, the GCHP was the first organization in the country to provide a spectrum of culturally appropriate direct services for Asians and Pacific Islanders living with AIDS and HIV, while acknowledging the diversity within that community.

The Asian/Pacific AIDS Coalition started the Asian and Pacific Islander AIDS Direct Services Program in 1988 with twelve volunteers who were trained by AIDS service providers and Asian health providers through an intensive 40 hour training using models developed by Shanti Project, Visiting Nurses and Hospice, and other emotional support service providers. This training was molded into an effective culturally appropriate model, presented by Asian and Pacific Islander trainers twice a year. The program was created to fill gaps in existing services and works in coordination with other agencies. This training has been providing significant numbers of trained volunteers, who provide direct emotional and practical support to clients. In 1989/1990 this Direct Services Program was transferred to the GCHP with funding for a half-time Program Coordinator, Steve Lew (the former chair of GAPA's HIV/AIDS Committee), who later became GCHP's Executive Director.

In 1992 the San Francisco AIDS Office ranked GCHP fourth out of 124 AIDS service contracts monitored by the agency. In 1993, over 1200 men and their partners utilized GCHP programs to help them with issues related to the risk of HIV infection. Also in 1993 they received funding from the Centers for Disease Control to launch a national technical assistance and training program for gay Asian and Pacific Islander community organizations' HIV prevention efforts. As of 1994 their Direct Support Services provided, annually, case management, HIV treatment counseling, and emotional/practical support to over 140 Asian and Pacific Islander men, women and children with HIV in San Francisco. In 1995 the name was changed from GCHP to the Living Well Project, the name of their very successful network of more than 80 HIV positive Asians and Pacific Islanders, which had been producing a monthly newsletter and providing monthly support activities and networking. Information on the activities of the GCHP also appeared regularly in the Lavender Godzilla, GAPA's newsletter. This included advertisements for services and support groups, as well as announcements of fundraisers and housing requests.

The Asian American Health Forum (AAHF), a national organization dedicated to sound health policy development targeting Asian and Pacific Islanders, served as GCHP's fiscal agent before their incorporation; later on GCHP served as a fiscal agent for other small organizations.

From the guide to the GAPA Community HIV Project (CGHP) papers, 1989-1995, (The UCSF Library and Center for Knowledge Management, Archives and Special Collections)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf GAPA Community HIV Project (CGHP) papers, 1989-1995 The UCSF Library and Center for Knowledge Management, Archives and Special Collections
creatorOf GAPA Community HIV Project (GCHP). Records, 1989-1995. University of California, San Francisco
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith GAPA Community HIV Project (GCHP) corporateBody
associatedWith Gay Asian Pacific HIV Project corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country

Corporate Body

Active 1989

Active 1995



Ark ID: w60p6rx6

SNAC ID: 30398638