Live deadly stronger and longer: Ask for a Test

Live deadly stronger and longer: Ask for a Test

HIV Australia | Vol. 11 No. 3 | October 2013

By the Northern Territory AIDS and Hepatitis Council

The Northern Territory AIDS and Hepatitis Council (NTAHC) has developed ‘Ask for a Test’, an Indigenous blood borne virus (BBV) and sexual health poster campaign.

To develop the campaign, Brett Trindle, NTAHC’s Aboriginal Sexual Health Worker in Alice Springs, consulted with Aboriginal people and staff at the local Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service (Congress).

The consultation process revealed low levels of BBV and sexual health awareness and literacy within Alice Springs and surrounding Aboriginal communities.

The consultation also provided ideas and information for the poster series concept and content.

The ‘Ask for a Test’ Aboriginal poster campaign was focus-tested with urban and remote Indigenous people in both Darwin and Alice Springs.

Focus testing included a diverse cross-section of community members – from young Indigenous women to the Elders of communities, as well as Indigenous sexual health workers.

This community input guided development of the campaign poster series. The posters have been produced for distribution to remote Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services and remote clinics and other health services.

Central Australia Aboriginal Congress worked with NTAHC to develop and endorse the series. Feedback about the campaign included ‘Awesome’, ‘LOVE them’, ‘the people are so real … so everyday’.

Using images of a young Indigenous woman, two young men, a pensive older man and a strong proud man dressed in traditional ceremonial clothing has enabled the campaign to reach a diverse range of the Indigenous population with a strong message that ultimately says ‘HIV is everybody’s business’.

NTAHC is making the poster series available for rebranding so it can be used by other jurisdictions across the Territory and Australia.

To date, Nhulunbuy, Yuendumu, Danila Dilba, Borroloola, Tiwi Islands, as well as Top End Remote Sexual Health and Blood Borne Virus Unit and the urban Darwin and Alice Springs teams, have all taken up offer to rebrand the campaign for use with their communities.

Interstate interest has also been received from the Victorian Aboriginal Health Service, Hunter New England Local Health District in NSW.

The process of rebranding posters for other jurisdictions is also underway. Iterations of the poster campaign have been used for World AIDS Day, the Darwin Pride Festival and NAIDOC Week, as well as variations used on condom wrappers, web banners and email signatures.

The campaign is currently being evaluated. Contact NTAHC for more information.

Further information about the ‘Ask for a Test’ campaign is available at