The Core Group is the decision making body of ABBA that designs and carries out all project activities and events. It is comprised of 12 young adults.
The ABBA Core Group is designed to:
- Analyze the problems and dilemmas that young gay/bisexual men face in Dayton and the surrounding areas as men of color.
- Strategize how to address those problems through project activities and community events.
- Provide the proper education to other young adults to succeed in prevention and awareness.
ABBA has reached goals in prevention and awareness through networking and connections within the Dayton metropolitan area. We engage in community sponsored events to provide social support, linkage to care and the opportunity to education within our community. Our Community Outreach events recommend testing for HIV and sexually transmitted diseases and also provide the time to promote safer sex practices. We have a range of events that include our quarterly “Kiki Vogue Nights,” game/activity nights and movies nights, to give individuals the chance to socialize and meet other same gender loving men in a safe environment. These events allow ABBA members to invite young gay men to participate or join the Mpowerment movement and other activities.
M-groups are peer-led, one-time meetings of 8 to 10 young gay/bisexual men that give participants an opportunity to talk openly about HIV prevention issues. The meetings, which usually last about two hours, are an extremely important part of Mpowerment. M-groups make it possible to get to know one another in a relaxed, supportive and enjoyable setting. The groups help young men to confront issues and feelings that they may not ordinarily face and relate to other young men in a deep and profound way thereby building bonds throughout the community.
M-Group topics include but are not limited to:
- Uncertainty about what is unsafe and safer sex
- Beliefs that safer sex is boring and not fun
- Poor communication skills for negotiating safer sex
- Beliefs that it is difficult to get a partner to have safer sex with you
- Interpersonal issues that may interfere with safer sex
- Lack of planning ahead to have safer sex
- Lack of perceived social norms that support safer sex and knowing your current HIV status
- Lack of knowledge of correct use of condoms
- Social support to have safer sex to get tested