Programming Connection

The H.E.R. Pregnancy Program 

Edmonton, Alberta

Why Was the Program Developed?

In 2007–2008, Edmonton experienced a significant increase in rates of syphilis. A physician from the STD Centre (also known as the Sexually Transmitted Infections Clinic) in Edmonton approached the Streetworks program to explore how they might collaborate to address the syphilis outbreak and specifically work to help high-risk pregnant women to access prenatal care. The STD Centre accessed funding from 2008–2010 to implement this peer-based outreach program called Women in the Shadows.

The Alberta government started to fund the program in 2011, and it has evolved into the more comprehensive H.E.R. program. This funding allows the H.E.R. program to maintain a larger staff complement, provide a broader set of services for its clients and gain greater access to materials and supplies than the Women in the Shadows program was able to do.