The objective of the ACAS Men’s Program is to reduce the spread of HIV and Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) among Asian Men, including gay, bi and men who have sex with men (MSM). The Men’s Program also provides educational outreach to straight, heterosexual Asian men through the Locker Room Project. Utilizing healthy sexuality and risk and harm reduction approaches, the program promotes safer sex practices and safe substance through educational outreach and behavioural intervention trainings to program participants in a culturally appropriate and sensitive manner. In additional to education, the program also offers social support events to service users.
What do we do?
We provide sexual health and health promotion workshops to East and Southeast Asian me, and distribute free condoms and lube through outreach at bars, clubs, bathhouses and swingers clubs, and specialcommunity outreach events. The ACAS Men’s Program is currently conducting the CIHR-funded Asian MSM Pathways to Resiliency (AMP2R) community-based research study to explore the strengths and resiliencies of the East and Southeast Asian gay, bi and MSM population.
SLAM! (Sex, Love, Asian, Men!)
SLAM! is the gay/bi Asian Men’s program created by Asian Community AIDS Services (ACAS) based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The SLAM! website is a hub to curate relevant and interesting information for gay/bi Asian men.
ACAS’ Men’s Program aims to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS among Asian men who have sex with men by promoting safer sex practices, harm reduction behaviours and early intervention in culturally relevant ways. Interactions with community members through our outreach activities at bathhouses, bars, and other community events have indicated a gap in the sexual health information being provided to our target population, Asian gay/bi men. Further, inconsistent and potentially unreliable or out-of date information is, we believe, contributing to inadequate sexual health-related decision-making among Asian gay/bi men.
In November 2009,we piloted a sexual health symposium entitled Sex, Love, Asian Men! (SLAM!) in order to reach a broad audience as well as to identify gaps and barriers in Asian men’s sexual health education and service needs. The symposium was targeted to self-identified Asian gay/bi men from all ethnic backgrounds. Over 30 participants attended the inaugural event, which consisted of three interactive educational and knowledge translation workshops on sexually transmitted infections (STIs), risks, and HIV testing (Sex Without Fear), relationships (Sex and Relationships), and body image (Sex and Body Image).Workshops were facilitated by prominent members of the Asian community.
ACAS’ Men’s Program is committed to reaching the broader Asian male population using an inclusive, non-judgmental approach to identify and respond to the needs of our target population. To that end, we intend to expand the scope of our programming beyond HIV/AIDS, and plan to continue SLAM! yearly. We intend to build on our success by bringing together previous and new participants from across Ontario, and expanding our presenters and facilitators to relevant local, national and international, health-care providers, and front line workers who have expertise related to Asian men’s sexual health needs and concerns.
Visit the SLAM! site here: http://slam.2016.acas.org/
Men’s Program highlights:
Men’s Program for gay, bi, and MSM East and Southeast Asian Men:
Asian Bathhouse Night at Spa Excess every third Thursday of the month
Community Based Research: Asian Men Pathways to Resiliency (AMP2R) Study
S.L.A.M! (Sex. Love. Asian Men!): Community sexual health forum for and by gay, bi, straight, trans Asian men
How can you get involved?
You could get involved by becoming a Men’s Program volunteer to help with our outreach activities. To volunteer, please fill out our online volunteer intake form or speak to one of our friendly staff at an outreach event.
Ryan Tran, MSM Sexual Health Coordinator
(416) 963-4300 ext. 235
Brian Bao-Ly, Men’s Program Coordinator
(416) 963-4300 ext. 236
Michael Adia, Gay Men’s Outreach Worker