The Hiv Vereniging (Dutch Association of People with HIV) is committed to unconditional equal rights for people in the Netherlands with HIV, in any situation, at any time. People with HIV are the focus of everything the association does.
The Hiv Vereniging is for and by people with HIV and their families. We offer support and contact, so that you can take control. We tirelessly address issues such as discrimination and emancipation of people with HIV. It is also important that people can be free in their own way of life, and for this we provide objective information. By connecting the different groups within the Hiv Vereniging, we are strong in promoting collective and individual interests.
We inform you about HIV
We offer objective information to people with HIV, their family, health care professionals and the general public. On our website you will find information and tips on topics such as HIV care, healthy living, work and money. In addition, the website offers an overview of activities in the country.
We offer news through various channels, for example blogs or social media. Would you like to stay informed? Subscribe to our newsletter Positive News! (in Dutch).
We look after your interests
Your experiences with HIV in daily life are important to our advocates. They will address the medical, social and legal problems you encounter, with the aim of solving them and preventing their recurrence.
In addition, they follow the developments surrounding HIV and keep you informed (in Dutch) about them. Do you have questions, issues or problems that you would like to raise? Then contact the Servicepunt.
We provide meetings and support!
Group activities and meetings
Volunteers organise activities
across the country and inform people via digital channels (the website, Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter). These activities can be regional or for a specific group. You can join a lunch, dinner or café evening for informal exchange or participate in informative meetings.
Peer counselingSupportive one-to-one conversations
with a trained peer counselor for people who have just heard that they are HIV positive and are starting treatment. Based on your needs, we link you to a peer counsellor. In 2-5 conversations, at a place of your choice, you will be helped with acceptance and finding your own path.
Workshopreeks ‘Positive living’A number of informative meetings
in a fixed group of 5-10 people. For people who have been diagnosed recently or for those who are ready for contact with others. The mutual exchange is guided by 2 trained volunteers with HIV and can contribute to your processing of your HIV diagnosis.
For questions about living with HIV, registrations for activities, peer counselling and the workshopreeks, you can call a trained expert by experience. They will listen to your questions, engage in a conversation and think along with you. Your privacy is guaranteed and you remain anonymous if you wish. Prefer a one-off face-to-face meeting? That is also possible!
Download the Hiv Vereniging leaflet here (in Dutch).
As an organisation for and by people with HIV, we believe it is important that people with HIV are involved in all areas of the organisation, that they have a voice in decision making, and that the needs of all people with HIV in the Netherlands are listened to. This is called Meaningful Involvement of People with HIV (MIPA). This MIPA principle (in Dutch) plays a very important role within the Hiv Vereniging.
Become a member, support us!
Support the Hiv Vereniging by becoming a member (in Dutch). With your membership you will show solidarity with the community and we will be able to stand up for the interests of people with HIV. You will receive the magazine plus>, you will receive discounts on a number of activities and you can influence the association's policy. If you prefer to make a donation, that is also possible.
Postal address: Postbus 15847 1001 NH Amsterdam
Visiting address: Eerste Helmersstraat 17 - A3, 1054 CX, Amsterdam
Tel: 020 - 616 01 60
The structure of the Hiv Vereniging
The Hiv Vereniging is based on its members, making the Members' Council the highest body. The board and the national office are responsible for the day-to-day business, advocacy, information provision and support for the volunteers. The volunteers make the activities and the range of products possible.
The Member Council
The Hiv Vereniging is based on its members.
Since 2021, we have had a Member Council (in Dutch) instead of a General Assembly. The members council is the highest body within the Hiv Vereniging. It will meet (at least) 3 times a year or as many times as the members of the council consider necessary. These meetings are open to members of the HIv Vereniging, after registration. The board is accountable to the members council for the policy it has pursued and the members council determines the strategic policy and the annual plans for the coming period.
The members' council appoints a board member for a period of three years, which may be extended no more than once for the same period. The Board meets monthly; these meetings are open to members of the association on request.
In the board are (according to function and/or field of activity):
- Chairman, Reina Foppen
- Secretaris, Michael de Graaf
- Treasurer: Julia Nitulescu
- Sexual health and testing, Peter van Delft
- General board member, Wilma Brokking
The Hiv Vereniging is a voluntary organisation and can do its work through the many efforts of its volunteers. The coordinators and representatives of various regions, groups and products meet in the executive council, a place for exchanging experiences. This executive council has the possibility to give a weighty advice to the board. You can read more about the structure of the executive council here (in Dutch).
The national office
The national office has a director and there are employees for: (digital) information provision, advocacy, medical affairs and care, volunteer policy/support, mutual contact and support and for specific projects. The staff is supported by the office manager and the secretariat.
national office staff:
- representative for Social and legal affairs, Mr. Ronald Brands
- representative for Medical Affairs and Care, Thijs Albers
- project lead on information provision and community, Inês Brito
- staff member for Communication, vacant
- staff member for Communication, Tomas Derckx
- office manager, Reina Balvers
- staff member Secretariat, Sander de Groot
- staff member Secretariat, Nicolet Rijkeboer
Articles of association and rules of procedure
The Hiv Vereniging's Articles of Association and Rules of Procedure were revised in 2021. The administrative development of a council of members made it necessary to amend the Articles of Association and the Rules and Regulations.
The new versions can be viewed here:
1e Helmersstraat 17 - A3, 1054 CX, Amsterdam
From the Ring Road West (A10 or E22), take the Osdorp exit (S106) and turn right at the traffic lights, in the direction of Amsterdam Centre, where you will arrive at the Surinameplein. At this roundabout, turn right over the bridge and follow the road to the left. You are now on the Overtoom. At the end of the Overtoom (which is a T-junction) turn left onto the Stadhouderskade and then immediately left again onto the Eerste Helmersstraat.
You can reach the Eerste Helmersstraat by public transport from Amsterdam Central Station with tram lines 1, 2, 5 and bus 172 (stop Leidseplein). When you walk from the Leidseplein in the direction of the Stadhouderskade (you leave the square behind you, the Hotel American is on your right), you turn right on the Stadhouderskade. Walk to the T-junction (the Overtoom is on your left), where the quay is now called the Nassaukade. On the corner of the Overtoom you will see a sports shop. Cross the road here. The Eerste Helmersstraat runs parallel to the Overtoom, in other words, it is the next street on the left.
My Hiv Vereniging
Members of the Hiv Vereniging have access to the member portal of the association. As a member you can log in with an e-mail address that is known to the Hiv Vereniging, after which you can create a password. Through this member portal you can change your own (address) data. On your personal page you can also indicate whether you want to receive digital member communications. Read more here (in Dutch).
Member council meetings
The membership council meets at least in May and November. The next members council will be on Saturday 23 July 2022.
The members council discusses and votes on various (policy) matters. These include work plans, budgets, annual reports and annual accounts, but also policy notes that deal with long-term plans such as a multi-year policy plan or a note on a specific topic.
Complaints Committee and Appeals Committee
Where people work together, differences of opinion or conflicts may arise and people may feel dissatisfied. Most of the time, this can be solved by discussing it. Nevertheless, there are situations in which discussion does not lead to a solution.
This is why the Complaints Committee (for external parties) and the Appeals Committee (for members and volunteers) are set up. The three elected committee members sit on both the Complaints Committee and the Appeals Committee.
The Complaints Committee can be called in to deal with dissatisfaction about the organisation of the Hiv Vereniging and the handling or treatment by the association or persons working for the association.
The members of the Complaints Committee are appointed by the Members' Council and they follow the Hiv Vereniging's Complaints Regulations.
The Appeals Committee is involved in disputes between members (including board versus volunteer(s)), and its task is to mediate. If this is unsuccessful, or in the event of dissatisfaction, the dispute is submitted to the members' council, where the Appeals Committee reports.
The committee members
The members of the Complaints Committee and Appeals Committee introduce themselves below:
Marjo van Bergen
‘From 2010 to early 2014 I worked at ShivA as a spiritual counselor and trainer. There I organised and guided the retreats and coordinated the content of the national commemoration on Aids Memorial Day . I am a humanistic counsellor and have a practice, In Transit coaching & meaning. In this practice, I counsel people on life issues, provide spiritual palliative care, organise retreats, and assist professionals in staying meaningful and inspired at work. Dealing with moral dilemmas is part of my profession and my work. My touchstone is always doing justice to "the other", that is, meeting the rights, interests and desires of all those involved in a particular situation. At the Humanistisch Verbond, I was involved in drawing up the complaints procedure and setting up the complaints advisory committee'.
‘As a gay man, I had and have always had an affinity with HIV. My coming out was in the early 80s, at the same time as the first reports of AIDS in the US. As a person and as a professional, I have benefited greatly from the various meetings and conferences of the Hiv Vereniging. After having been a teacher for 10 years, in the 90's I worked mainly in HIV-AIDS care. Among other things, I wrote training materials on HIV and AIDS for professionals and supported the buddy projects. From 2000, I volunteered for 10 years at Schorer Buddyzorg as a trainer and group supervisor. The last few years, I have mainly focused on increasing the expertise of (future) care professionals about sexual diversity. Improving the quality of care and service, in which the client and his/her loved ones are central, is for me - besides personal involvement in a theme - an important motive in my work. Dealing carefully with complaints is part of this. Complaints can also be seen as 'free advice' to do better in the future. As a member of the Appeals Committee and the Complaints Committee, I would therefore like to contribute to improving the quality of service of the Hiv Vereniging’.
'I think it is important that new people are regularly recruited to run the Complaints Committee. Users, members, staff and volunteers of the Hiv Vereniging deserve a safe address for complaints that can be properly discussed out of sight of others and lead to a satisfactory and/or workable solution for both parties. I am a homosexual man living alone and I am a nurse specialist (GGZ) by profession. I work as a trainer of nurses-in-training-to specialist and for a small part as a practitioner at an outpatient clinic for personality disorders at GGZ inGeest in Amsterdam. I have experience with complaint handling in the GGZ and I am a member of the Examination Committee of the national GGZVS training programme in Utrecht.
I have known since 1996 that I have HIV and immediately sought support from the Hiv Vereniging. I have done voluntary work for the vereniging on a limited scale (Quality Committee) and regularly attend various meetings of the vereniging, including those of the Long Term Survivors and Poz & Proud. The diversity, the contact with other people with HIV and above all, fortunately, often the shared enjoyment of life are characteristic for me of the vereniging. I like to be part of it and I like to do something for it!'