Botswana: Community Leaders Play Important Role

| June 21, 2016

Community leaders have been urged to work together to control HIV.

Briefing Ntlo Ya Dikgosi, the principal information education for National Aids Coordination Agency (NACA) Ms Kaone Kgotlaetsile said there was still a lot to do in terms of controlling and preventing HIV, and therefore urged community leaders to be on the forefront in empowering their people so as to eliminate new HIV cases in their jurisdiction.

Ms Kgotlaetsile said it was high time HIV and AIDS was on the lips of every individual so that the country would reach zero new infections as per the vision of NACA.

She said dikgosi should be the main drivers by participating as well as planning, guiding, implementing activities around HIV and AIDS.

She mentioned that they should have a community facilitator who would mobilise volunteers so that they communicated with community members through household consultations to build a shared vision.

She said all along the communities were not involved in the fight against HIV/AIDS hence the new model which would promote bottom-up approach to face the enemy squarely as compared to the up-bottom approach in which initiatives were imposed on the communities.

She mentioned that the initiative would work because they would mobilise leadership to drive it and come up with ideas basing on their culture which could work best to fight the spread of the virus.

Ms Kgotlaetsile also gave a brief description of the "All-In" which is a platform for collaboration and action in adolescent HIV prevention care.

She stated that the 'All In" targets adolescents, and that by 2020 they desired to have reduced AIDS deaths by 65 per cent, reduce new infections by 75 per cent as well as eliminating stigma and discrimination.

She stated that the priority groups were of ages between 10 to 14 years as well as of ages 15 to 19 years.

The adolescents she said would be engaged through various forms of education.

Source: Botswana Daily News

Category: Governance

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