As we observe World Aids Day today, a non-profit organisation is implementing it’s strategy to “end” AIDS by 2026.
The Mothers-to-Mothers organisation was founded at the height of the AIDS epidemic in South Africa in 2001.
Deputy President David Mabuza, as the chairperson of the South African National Aids Council (SANAC), will address the World Aids Day national commemoration event in Bloemfontein in the Free State on Thursday.
This year’s theme is theme “Equalise and Integrate to End Aids”.
The Mothers-to-Mothers’ Nozi Samela says it conceptualised a peer-based model to provide education on HIV from mothers to mothers living with HIV.
“Women living with HIV could their experience of overcoming an HIV diagnosis and the trust they have in their communities to help other women, provide with the care they need. And these mentor-mothers could be paid health professionals. It works because they have a deep understanding of the social and cultural challenges that their clients face on the in their journey to good health”.
According to Samela, this peer-led model is at the heart of its “End Aids” strategy.
She says the organisation’s focus now is the large-scale rollout of this programme, through partnership with governments and other NPOs.
“We can’t work in silos. We want to help others learn from our successes and failures. Also for us to learn from their successes and failures, and ultimately ensure that there’re more paid and professionalised community health workers across the African continent, will help end AIDS and make health a reality for all”.