GBMSM Advisory Panel

In collaboration with ROAM and the Lothian GBMSM Sexual Health and HIV Group, we are bringing together a panel of gay, bisexual, and all men who have sex with men (GBMSM) to help us develop and improve our services across Edinburgh and the Lothians.

About the Lothian GBMSM Sexual Health and HIV Group

The Lothian GBMSM (Gay, Bisexual, and all Men who have Sex with Men) Sexual Health and HIV Group brings together NHS (including ROAM, Chalmers, Public Health) and third sector partners (including SX, LGBT Health and Wellbeing and Waverley Care) working towards the Scottish Government SHBBV Framework outcomes to improve the health, and reduce inequalities for GBMSM through targeted annual objectives.

The GBMSM Sexual Health and HIV Group works hard to ensure that people’s voices are heard throughout our programmes of activity. We engage with the communities we work with to ensure the services we provide are exactly what people want and need.

To ensure that these objectives and the work of the group are appropriate and relevant for ALL GBMSM in Edinburgh and the Lothians, the Group aims to develop and support a GBMSM Advisory Panel (the Panel).  

About ROAM

ROAM is a community-based, outreach sexual health service working across Lothian with gay and bisexual men, and all men who have sex with men (GBMSM). ROAM is part of the Chalmers sexual health service provided by NHS Lothian. 

They are a free and confidential sexual health testing service that aim to provide a supportive service that is welcoming, free from judgement and discrimination, offering various sexual health testing options including face to face appointments, outreach sessions, home sampling kits, PrEP assessments, vaccinations, 1:1 support and advice. 

They work closely with GBMSM in the community through our outreach work at cruising sites, gay saunas and online.

Together, the panel will:

  • Ensure that the needs of GBMSM we work with are put first
  • Help set strategic direction and oversee its implementation within our services
  • Ensure that GBMSM’s voices are heard and represented across all areas of our work
  • Work with partner agencies to represent GBMSM across Scotland and influence policy and practice within sexual health and relationships.
Who we are looking for

We are recruiting up to 8-10 gay, bisexual, or men who have sex with men to serve on our Panel.

Panellists will play a crucial role in shaping the work the GBMSM Sexual Health and HIV Group undertakes. We want to attract individuals with diverse skills and experiences, both personal and professional, to support that aim.

Previous experience of participation or interest in the health and wellbeing of the community is not essential.

The main criteria for panellists are:

  • Must be aged 18 or over
  • Must identify as Gay, Bisexual or as a man who has sex with men
  • Must identify as either a cisgender or trans man
  • Must live in Edinburgh and the Lothians

We believe lived experience is invaluable and we are looking for panellists who can share perspectives or insights from the wider community. We are particularly keen to promote diversity among panellists to include the voices of people from the communities that we work with. This could include:

  • People with lived experience of issues that disproportionately affect GBMSM (accessibility, geographical isolation, stigma, HIV, mental health etc.)
  • People from within groups in society disproportionately affected by poor sexual health (e.g. transgender people, people of colour, people living with a disability)
  • People that have experience of accessing sexual health services/have been affected by sexual health and relationship issues

Across all categories, we are looking for proactive individuals who share our values and believe passionately in supporting GBMSM to overcome inequalities to improve their health and wellbeing. If that sounds like you then we would love to hear from you.

This is a voluntary, unpaid position but reasonable expenses are covered.

Structure and Commitment

As this is a new initiative, both structure and priorities for the Panel will be shaped by its members following the initial meeting, supported by ROAM and SX Scotland staff.

However, we expect panellists to attend a minimum of four meetings per year, as well as contributing to other bits of work as and when the need for the Panel’s involvement arises. This may include involvement in sub-groups, which will vary depending on specific skills and interests of elected panellists.

Meetings will initially be held remotely however in future, as COVID restrictions ease, meetings are likely to include a mix of virtual and face-to-face settings.

In addition to meetings, the Panel will be responsible for feeding back to the GBMSM Sexual Health and HIV Group on their work and involvement. This may involve meeting attendance or alternative feedback methods to communicate the work of the panel.

Skills and Experience

To help ensure that the Panel can play an effective role in supporting our work, we want to promote diversity among appointed members, as we believe that people from all backgrounds can bring valuable skills and experiences.

Below, we have set out some examples of the types of characteristics that we are looking for in our panellists. However, this should not be viewed as a checklist.

Whether you have one, some, or all of the characteristics listed, the most important factor is passion for helping to empower GBMSM to live healthy and satisfying lives. If that sounds like you, then we would love to hear from you.

Skills and Knowledge 

  • An excellent communicator, confident expressing their views and opinions, or willingness to develop.
  • Understanding of the issues around sexual health and relationships that face GBMSM across Edinburgh and the Lothians.
  • Ability to think creatively and work with different groups of people.
  • Ability to prepare and present information that represents the needs of GBMSM.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Lived experience of the issues that our work deals with – including personal experience, or experience of supporting or working with others.
  • Experience in areas such as digital inclusion, education and training, accessibility, health and wellbeing.

Values and Behaviours

  • Commitment to improving the sexual health and wellbeing of GBMSM.
  • Willingness to devote the necessary time and effort to the role.
  • Good independent judgement.
  • Self-motivated and flexible.
  • A team player with the ability to develop good working relationships with other panellists, staff and partners.
  • Willingness and ability to be available to staff for advice and enquiries as required.
  • Able to demonstrate understanding of and apply NHS Lothian and Waverley Care values:
    • NHS Lothian Values: Care and Compassion; Dignity and Respect; Quality; Teamwork; Openness, Honesty and Responsibility
    • Waverley Care: Respect;  Believe; Build; Inspire

For an informal conversation about the role, please contact Christopher Ward (SX Manager) by emailing christopher.ward@s-x.scot or Troy Baines (ROAM Sexual Health Nurse Practitioner) by emailing troy.baines@nhslothian.scot.nhs.uk. Alternatively, you (or someone on your behalf) can call the ROAM office on 0131 536 1773 to discuss other options if email is not suitable.

To apply to join our GBMSM Panel, please send a CV/Resume and covering letter, stating why you are interested to info@s-x.scot.

The closing date for applications is midnight (12am) on Sunday 27 February 2022.

Following the closing date, candidates will be shortlisted. Those that are successful will be invited to meet members of staff to tell us more about their interest in the Panel.

We welcome all applicants and will aim to provide opportunities for everyone to apply in a way that meets the needs of the applicant. Please do not hesitate to contact us by your preferred method.