Terrence Higgins Trust: The Causes Behind Our Christmas Cards

Behind our Charity Christmas Cards are nine incredible causes who spread a little joy in a big way to people in need. This year, £150,000 from the sales of our cards will go to these amazing charities, split equally between them to support the wonderful work they do. And in the season of giving, what could be more magical than getting to know these guys a better – learning how they give back, and how wishing your loved ones well this year will go even further than your nearest and dearest.  

 

We caught up with the lovely folks from the Terrence Higgins Trust to learn all about what they’re doing to support those living with HIV. To learn how you can help and why the work they are doing is so vital, read on. 

 

 Terrence Higgins Trust

 

Q1. In a nutshell, what does Terrence Higgins Trust do?


We strive for a future where there are no new cases of HIV, where people living with HIV live fulfilling lives free from stigma and there is good sexual health for all.


Q2. When was it established and where do you operate? And is there a unique story about how and why it began?


Our charity was formed in 1982 following the death of Terry Higgins, one of the first to die from AIDS-related illnesses. Terry’s partner and friends founded Europe’s first HIV support organisation in his name in response to an emerging epidemic and to provide life-saving information at a time when fear and stigma were rife.


Terrence Higgins Trust is the UK’s leading HIV and sexual health charity. We're the largest voluntary sector provider of HIV and sexual health services in the UK, running services out of local centres across Great Britain.

 

Q3. When people donate, where does their money go? 


40 years on from the first cases of HIV and our work is very different – but still life-changing. Our helpline THT Direct provides vital support when people need it, it’s a lifeline that helps nearly 20,000 vulnerable people each year. We also support people living with HIV with a range of services including the hardship fund which aims to alleviate financial poverty and counselling and psychotherapy services.


The money raised will also support our Positive Voices programme. Our Positive Voices speakers deliver talks about their personal stories of living with HIV to organisations and schools across the UK.


Q4. What has been one of the most significant/important projects you’ve seen your work aid?


Terrence Higgins Trust continues to successfully challenge a range of discriminatory policies and practices to ensure they reflect the reality of living with HIV in 2022. Earlier this year, we saw landmark changes in the UK’s military and in aviation to end the discrimination faced by those living with HIV in the armed forces thanks to our campaigning and work with Lt Cdr Oliver Brown, James Bushe and other charities and organisations.

HIV has changed and does not have to stop you from doing anything you want to do, that’s why we’ll continue to challenge outdated policies.

 



Q5. Which is your favourite of the 18 charity card designs?


Our favourite of the designs is the Market Tree Decoration card. This card captures perfectly the sense of togetherness associated with Christmas – this is something that is part of the essence of our charity. Togetherness is fundamental to Terrence Higgins Trust’s work. If we all work together, we can and will put an end to ignorance and an end to HIV transmissions in the UK.

 


Q6. How would you like to leave this world a better place? What is your charity’s ULTIMATE legacy?


Terrence Higgins Trust’s ultimate legacy is to end new cases of HIV by 2030 as a tribute to the millions of lives lost to the epidemic and to eradicate HIV stigma – because people living with HIV deserve to thrive, not just survive. The UK is currently working towards ending new cases of HIV within the decade. We’ll do everything in our power to make this happen – we owe it to all those lost to the epidemic on whose shoulders we stand – who fought for more research, more funding and more empathy during the darkest days of the epidemic.

 

 


Q7. What can people do to play their part in helping those impacted by HIV or poor sexual health?


Today, effective treatment means people living with HIV can expect and enjoy a long and fulfilling life and have confidence they have zero risk of passing the virus on to their partners. But sadly, people living with HIV continue to face stigma – it’s experienced on dating apps, at the dentist and overheard on the bus. Tackling stigma is a vital part of our work, but we can’t do it alone. We all need to play our part in tackling HIV stigma by challenging the misinformation we’ve heard about the virus, educating ourselves on the facts about HIV and sharing them with the people around us.



Q8. What does spreading a little joy in a big way mean to Terrence Higgins Trust?


To us, this means spreading the life-changing message that people who are on effective HIV treatment can’t pass on the virus. Imagine how much better the world would be if everyone knew this. This has the power to transform perceptions of HIV. Tell someone about this message today and play your part in breaking down the stigma around the virus.

 

We hope you enjoyed learning more about the incredible work that the Terrence Higgins Trust do. To support their work you can head to their website to learn more or pick up one of our Charity Christmas Cards online or in-store.  

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