About Us

How We Started

Background and History

1985
  • A small group of HIV positive gay men begin to gather in a Halifax kitchen seeking personal and emotional support
1988
  • Nova Scotia Persons With AIDS Coalition (NSPWAC) is formed with its focus on support and advocacy
1991
  • NSPWAC calls some concerned Cape Bretoners to meet
  • A small group of dedicated individuals developed a proposal and submitted to Health Canada’s AIDS Community Action Fund
  • A board was formed
  • The AIDS Coalition of Cape Breton (ACCB) was incorporated.
1992
  • Project funding became available in February
  • ACCB officially opened its doors April 1st as a resource and prevention/education program.
1994
  • Cape Breton’s first AIDS Walk
  • A proposal for a needle exchange was submitted to the NS Department of Health and declined
1996
  • A small outbreak occurred in the needle using community.
  • The proposal from the previous year was re-submitted
  • Sharp Advice Needle Exchange opened its first site in North Sydney
1997
  • ACCB hosts the first Gay social in Sydney on New Year’s Eve resulting in the organization being recognized as the first safe space for the LGBTQ community in Cape Breton.
1999
  • ACCB moved from Townsend Street to its current location @ 150 Bentinck Street
2000
  • Cape Breton’s first Gay Pride Parade
2003
  • The Nova Scotia Strategy on HIV/AIDS was released
  • ACCB headed up a working group to develop and submit a proposal for an opiate replacement program in Cape Breton
2004
  • Nova Scotia’s Standards for Blood Borne Pathogens Services was released
  • Addictions Services was funded to deliver an opiate replacement program.
  • The Government of Canada launched the Federal Initiative to Address HIV/AIDS
2006
  • ACCB was funded to provide anonymous counselling, testing and referral services.
2007
  • ACCB partners with Feed Nova Scotia to provide food bank services to its clients.
2008
  • ACCB coordinates the 1st International Day Against Homophobia in Cape Breton
2012
  • LGBTQ Resource and Support Program began
  • The Trans support group was formed
  • ACCB celebrated 20 years of service.
  • Cape Breton launched its own Blood Borne Pathogen Strategy
  • ACCB partners with Addictions Services and CBU on the IDU Knowledge Exchange and Capacity Building Projects
  • Discussions begin around the delivery of specialized primary health services for marginalized individuals.
2015
  • Name changed to ALLY Centre of Cape Breton (ACCB) in an effort to encompass all the programs and services offered
  • IDU project research reports are released
  • Mental Health and Addictions established the Downtown Clinic ORT program in partnership with ACCB
  • ACCB in partnership with Dr. Meaghan Keating opened the ALLY Health Clinic to offer primary health services to marginalized individuals.

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