PWN Speak Up! Summit 2016 Session Proposals
Proposal Submission Review Criteria
DEADLINE EXTENDED!: 11pm ET, Friday, May 20, 2016

We invite proposals for a variety types of sessions (affinity groups, discussion group, or workshop) for SPEAK UP! Positive Women’s Network – USA’s 2016 National Leadership Summit. Read about the Summit at
To find this session proposal form on our website, please visit:

SPEAK UP! A National Leadership Summit for Women Living with HIV will be held September 27-30, 2016 in Fort Walton Beach, FL. This Summit is open only to women with HIV, including transgender women with HIV.

In September 2014, Positive Women’s Network – USA (PWN-USA) held our first-ever National Leadership Summit to build advocacy skills and leadership capacity among over 200 women living with HIV from 26 states, the US Virgin Islands, Canada and Mexico. Participants from the 2014 Summit have gone on to do amazing work in their communities, fighting stigma, advocating for fair policies and supporting people living with HIV in their regions. The 2016 Summit will be designed for both first time participants and 2014 alumni as emerging and seasoned advocates to deepen advocacy and collective organizing strategies during a key election cycle.

If you are interested in contributing to this growing and vibrant community, we encourage you to submit an abstract to conduct a session (workshop or other activity at the Summit). As a session leader you will ensure that information and skill-building activities are provided in line with PWN-USA values, priorities, and goals for the Summit. Information about PWN-USA can be viewed at

There will be 5 workshop tracks at the Summit: 1) Rights, Power and Justice, 2) Building Leadership Skills, 3) Policy and Advocacy, 4) Media & Strategic Communications and 5) Advancing the HIV Research, Care, and Prevention Agenda
Descriptions for session tracks are below:


Policy & Advocacy
Sessions in the Policy and Advocacy track will examine or discuss timely policy and/or advocacy trends relevant to women with HIV and provide participants with tools to take action at the local, state and/or federal level.

Effective Leadership Skills
Sessions in the Leadership Skills track will focus on developing specific skills that support leadership by women with HIV, including self-care for leaders.

Rights, Power & Justice
Sessions in the Rights, Power & Justice track will focus on building critical consciousness and/or ability to use a human rights/social justice framework in advocacy. We are especially interested in sessions that intentionally hold a power, race, gender and/or class analysis and which advance our collective ability to be accountable and strategic as a movement-building organization. Sessions in this track may focus on particular rights and justice issues that disproportionately impact communities most affected by HIV.

Media & Strategic Communications
Sessions in the Media and Strategic Communications track will focus on building media and communications capacity of participants to advocate, organize and/or mobilize on policy issues through effective print, online and/or broadcast, and/or social media strategies.

Advancing the HIV Research, Care, and Prevention Agenda
Sessions in the Advancing HIV Research, Care, and Prevention Agenda track will focus on building our ability to advocate for innovative and timely research and service delivery that works for our communities.


* We welcome interactive and informal sessions, including discussion-based and hands-on training exercises.
* Session proposals should clearly communicate what knowledge, skills, tools, or insights participants can expect to gain from the session.
* We encourage sessions with more than one presenter or facilitator.
* Session presenters will not be compensated or otherwise reimbursed for travel, ground transportation from home to or to the Summit, food beyond meals covered through Summit registration, or other expenses. Presenters are expected to pay the Summit registration fee.
* Accepted sessions will be scheduled to minimize topic overlap and as meeting space and logistics allow. The program committee will consider requests for specific scheduling (day and time) but is unable to honor all scheduling requests.
* Once a session has been accepted and listed online, cancellation imposes a serious burden. Please do not submit a proposal if you are uncertain that you will be able to fulfill your obligation to organize and conduct the session.
* Please note: If your proposal is accepted, all information provided as a part of your proposal will be confirmed for accuracy prior to the Summit.


• Thursday, March 31, 2016 Release of Call for Summit Session Proposals
• Friday, May 20, 2016 Summit session proposals due


Sessions should provide an in-depth review of, or introduction to, a topic of interest, and should provide participants with materials and/or ideas that are immediately useful in the real world. Proposals will be assessed on the basis of the following criteria:

• Content is timely and relevant to PWN-USA’s mission, values, and/or policy platform (
• Content proposed is aligned with Summit goals.
• Goals of session are clearly stated.
• Proposal demonstrates a plan to leave participants with concrete tools they can use.
• Presenters demonstrate the expertise to present on the issue
• Session design includes presenters, speakers, or co-facilitators reflective of the constituencies impacted by issue.
• Session design is engaging, creative, and interactive.
• Supporting materials, i.e. handouts and/or online references

Final decisions will be made with an eye towards meaningful involvement of women with HIV and communities of color as presenters. In particular, we seek strong representation of women living with HIV, people of color, trans and gender non-conforming individuals, and young people as presenters. We welcome abstract submissions from well-intentioned allies and encourage allies to submit in collaboration with women living with HIV.

Please submit your proposal by completing this form by May 20, 2016.

Session Proposal Form: SPEAK UP! A National Leadership Summit for Women with HIV
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