The Virtual Two-Spirit project, a “culturally-grounded, online HIV prevention intervention for Native American and Alaska Native men who have sex with men,” is looking for Native American men to participate in its prevention program.

The project is being conducted by the Indigenous Wellness Research Institute at the University of Washington in Seattle.

The intervention “facilitates positive sexual health behaviors and promotes HIV risk harm reduction strategies,” according to a press release from the Virtual Two-Spirit Project. “Eligible participants who complete the three-week intervention and online assessments can receive up to $190 in incentives.

The Virtual Two-Spirit intervention uses a computer downloadable, virtual reality world where participants create their own avatar and go through experiential modules in learning about HIV testing, harm reduction techniques, condom use and condom use negotiation and behavioral role play, the press release explained.

Those conducting the intervention hope to see “an increase in HIV testing, more reliable condom use, and awareness and practice of harm reduction behaviors” among participants. Results will be used to refine the intervention for a larger study.

Those conducting the intervention are looking for men who:

  1. Are or identify as American Indian or Alaska Native;
  2. Are at least 18 years of age;
  3. Have an e-mail address, regular access to a computer with internet, and the ability to download free software;
  4. Are male [or identify as a male] and sex with men; and
  5. Are HIV-0negative or do not know their current HIV status.

For more information or to see if you are eligible, email or call 971-251-0402.

(The Virtual Two-Spirit project is supported by funding from the National Institute of Health and Health Disparities, Award Number P60MD006909. Principal Investigator, Karina Walters, PhD, University of Washington.)