Community-Linked Evaluation AIDS Resource | CLEAR Unit



The CLEAR Unit has been Funded for the Next Three Years, September 2004

The AIDS Bureau will continue to provide funding to the CLEAR Unit until March 31, 2007. The CLEAR Unit will undertake a series of different research projects, all designed to evaluate and strengthen the education, support and community development programs and activities provided by the province's community-based AIDS groups.


Local AIDS Service Organization Launches Study about Prison Services

Project Information:


HIV/AIDS Regional Services and Peterborough AIDS Resource Network

Project Title:

The Impact of ASO Prison Services on Quality of Life of Inmates

Principal Investigator:

Colleen Hannewyk (Former E.D.-Joanne McAlpine)

CLEAR Lead Investigator:

Robin Weir

On October 1st, 2003 a new study was launched to assess the impact of AIDS service organization's prison services on inmates quality of life. The study is designed to explore the impact of prison services delivered by HIV/AIDS Regional Services (HARS), the Kingston General Hospital HIV Clinic, and the Peterborough AIDS Resource Network (PARN). In-depth interviews will be carried out with both Correctional Service of Canada staff and inmates at federal penitentiaries. Interviews will be conducted at Kingston Penitentiary, Isabel McNeil House, the Regional Treatment Centre, Collins Bay, Millhaven, Frontenac, Pittsburgh, Joyceville, Warkworth, and Bath institutions.

"We've been waiting to get this study off the ground for some time", said Joanne McAlpine, Executive Director of HARS. "The results will shape what we are doing in the prison and how better to meet the HIV/AIDS-related needs of inmates". Marney McDiarmid has been hired to carry out the interviews and is working out of the HARS office.

The study comes at a time when there is an increased awareness of the prevalence of HIV in Canadian prisons. Rates of HIV-infection in inmate populations worldwide are much higher than in the general population. In 2000, Canadian health officials estimated that 1.66% of inmates are living with HIV. This statistic does not include the number of unreported infections. The prison support programs at HARS, PARN, and the KGH clinic are founded on the belief that any measure undertaken to prevent the spread of HIV and other infections will benefit inmates, their families, CSC staff, and the public.

For more information about the study, please contact Robin Weir (CLEAR Unit Investigator) by e-mail at: or Colleen Hannewyk (Executive Director at HARS) at 613-545-3698.




McMaster University

Faculty of Health Sciences at Frid

Building T30

75 Frid Street

Hamilton, Ontario   L8P 4M3

Please note: Mail will be redirected to our new address if you have already sent to our previous address.


AIDS Committee of Toronto Proposal Funded, April 2004

The AIDS Committee of Toronto has been awarded a grant of $50,000 from Wellesley Central Health Corporation for their research proposal entitled "The comparative effectiveness and cost of two approaches to the provision of practical assistance to PHAs by ACT".

Who is doing the survey?

One hundred twenty PHAs going to the AIDS Committee of Toronto are being invited by the AIDS Committee of Toronto, and the Community-Linked Evaluation AIDS Resource (CLEAR) Unit at McMaster University to participate in a research project about their Support Services Program.

Why are they doing this study?

To determine the value of two ways of providing support services to their clients either by support services alone or with case management for any other concerns. They want to identify if there are better ways of providing services to enhance the quality of life of their clients. The number of sessions with the support services worker and the case manager will be determined by individual needs.

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A presentation by our partner CBAO agencies about the work of CLEAR at the 4th Canadian HIV/AIDS Skills Building Symposium, November 20-23, 2003 in Calgary provided an overview of the following topics: historical overview of the development of CLEAR; community perspective on research; researcher perspective on working with the community; CLEAR evaluation findings; working with different languages/cultures; and challenges for the future.   Presenters included Committee Co-chairs, a committee community member and a CLEAR investigator. There was good feedback on the presentation regarding how the CLEAR Committee is a working body, the communications, culture and that the audience was surprised to learn how the ownership of data belongs to the CBAO and not the University or researchers.   CLEAR brings a level of consistency and stability between academics and the community.   CBAOs have ongoing relationships with CLEAR, and CLEAR is driven by the CBAOs.   Please go to Presentations and Workshops for additional information on the presentation, including the process and challenges of conducting research.

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CLEAR Unit: McMaster University, Faculty of Health Sciences at Frid
Building T30, 75 Frid Street, Hamilton, Ontario L8P 4M3
Tel: 905-525-9140, Ext. 22293 · Fax: 905-528-5099
Funded by: AIDS Bureau, Ontario Ministry of Health & Long-Term Care