Support Services

The Living Room

The Living Room


Complementary Therapies

Many people find that complementary therapies help to promote general well being as well as alleviate stress and the side effects of clinical treatment. We are fortunate in being supported by a number of qualified therapists offering therapies including massage and chiropractic treatments.



We are able to provide the assistance of an advocate to communicate on your behalf and/or to support you.


One-to-one Support

Our support staff is able to provide dedicated one-on-one support on a wide variety of issues and to refer you to other expert professionals as appropriate, including support for newly diagnosed individuals.


Drop-in Sessions

The drop-in sessions provide the opportunity to meet other service users and professionals such as University of Ottawa Legal Aid Clinic students, Ontario Disability Support Program workers, a registered dietitian and a Housing Help worker. Services are offered in a safe, non-judgmental and confidential environment.


Health Promotion

The Living Room offers services to promote health and well being such as subsidized YMCA gym memberships, food bank, access to laundry machines, and harm reduction supplies, as well as access to other practical services such as faxing, compeers/Internet and phones.

For more information or for an individual appointment, please contact Melissa at (613) 238-5014, ext. 241 or Sonya at ext. 223.

Socials and Groups

Socials and Groups

Socials and groups for different populations and needs are held at The Living Room (TLR) throughout the month. Some groups we provide lunch or dinner for participants, other will have recreational and/or educational activities or workshops planned.

For more information about different socials and groups, please see the following information or contact the following staff:

  • 50+ Group: Grant at (613) 238-5014, ext. 224.
  • Francophone Social: Haoua at (613) 238-5014, ext. 237.
  • Gay Men’s Social: Mathieu at (613) 238-5014, ext. 241.
  • Harm Reduction Social: Caleb at (613) 238-5014, ext. 252.
  • Mixed Social: Sonya at (613) 238-5014, ext. 253.
  • Straight Men’s Social: Sonya at (613) 238-5014, ext. 253.
  • Women’s Social: Mathieu at (613) 238-5014, ext. 241
  • Youth Group: Sonya at (613) 238-5014 ext, 253.
HIV+… Now What?

ACO sponsors this conversation group geared to gay men in the first three years of being diagnosed with HIV. The facilitator also lives with HIV. All topics of conversation are confidential, supportive and occasionally challenging. Everyone is welcome to share as much or as little as they want.

This group meets once a month on a Saturday afternoon. Please RSVP to Grant at (613) 238-5014, ext. 224.


Dog Day Afternoon Dog Walking Club

We recognize the importance that a pet plays in each of our total health. Being social is also important for our pets. With this in mind, the ACO sponsors a once-a-month dog walking club. The group is designed to provide a social place for those of us who enjoy the company of a pet. Coffee and dog treats are provided.

This group meets the second Wednesday of the month at Jack Purcell Park. For more information, please call Grant at (613) 238-5014, ext. 224.


Survive to Thrive

In the early days of HIV/AIDS, a diagnosis was often very grim. With the advert of the cocktail and new medications, many of us survived. Survive to Thrive is a closed Peer-driven self support group for those of us who consider themselves as long-term survivors of HIV. There is no specific time frame for living with HIV required, as many of us have lived with it in different ways. Regular attendance is a commitment we all make. We meet twice per month—one meeting is a social gathering and the other is a deeper facilitated conversation around living, loving and thriving with HIV. Membership is opened up once or twice per year.

For more information, please call Grant at (613) 238-5014, ext. 224.


Positive Attitude Coffee Club

ACO offers many services for many communities through the day, but there are many of us who are not able to access services during the Monday to Friday work week. Many of us are working-class and live in a small bubble where we don’t get to talk about some of the stuff that living with HIV can bring. ACO has created a safe and comfortable space where we can have coffee, a latte or hot chocolate with a small snack and just talk, without fear of disclosure or judgments… just us and a treat.

This group meets the one Friday per month. RSVP to Grant at (613) 238-5014, ext. 224.


ACB Groups

The African-Caribbean and Black Canadian support group is for anyone who is infected with HIV/AIDS, and of African-Caribbean descent. Our group meets once a month from noon—6pm in a confidential and special space where they can come together to share and learn from each other. We partake of a homemade meal made by us. We bring in knowledgeable guest speakers to discuss relevant topics, and we provide child-care on-site during the group time.

If you have any questions, please contact Haoua at (613) 238-5014, ext. 237.

Learning and Growing

Learning and Growing


Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) Workshops

This is a series of workshops introducing traditional medicines, such as Reiki, aromatherapy, meditation, etc. The aim is to provide different options for participants to manage their health.

For more information, please contact Mathieu at (613) 238-5014, ext. 241.


Community Kitchen

The Living Room (TLR) holds its Community Kitchen once a month. Participants and staff share and learn culinary skills from each other. It provides a great opportunity to learn how to make nutritious food on a budget and how to utilize food bank items.

For more information, please contact Sonya at (613) 238-5014, ext. 253.


Cuisine/Pastry Class

We provide cuisine and/or pastry classes throughout the year. These classes provide participants with opportunities to explore different flavours, develop culinary skills and share their specialities.

For more information, please contact Sonya at (613) 238-5014, ext. 253.


Learning Centre

Our Learning Centre has eight computers available for participants and volunteers to access different learning programs, including Microsoft Office, French/English learning programs, etc. We also have staff and volunteers that can provide one-on-one support based on a participant’s learning needs.

For more information, please contact Sonya at (613) 238-5014, ext. 253.