Last week was Condom Week. It is a critical week on the health calendar as it is used to educate the public on STIs and how to prevent them through condom use. Our vision is to be the leader in empowering communities to be healthy and free of TB and HIV. To achieve our vision, we need to continually search for innovative ways to reach as many South Africans as possible.
TB HIV Care went live on Facebook for the first time in June 2019, and we received 84 views. Last week, the Communications Unit, along with IT, joined Team Southern (Cape Metro) on outreach in Vrygrond. Our first session of the day received 837 views.
Streaming live is a useful communication tool as it is a personal and authentic way to communicate with both internal staff and the public at the same time.
We arrived in Vrygrond at 11:45 on a sweltering hot day. I was surprised how quickly the outreach team was able to set up everything and get going.
Everyone knew what their roles were and executed them brilliantly. The event consisted of three sessions.
In the first session, Nondumiso Mtshiselwa (also known as Ndumi), who is the Priority Population Prevention Coordinator, introduced TB HIV Care by informing everyone about who we are and what we do. Ndumi went on to engage with the audience around the use of condoms, the importance of knowing one’s status and invited a volunteer to participate in a condom demonstration.
In the second session, Ndumi interviewed a young lady that was waiting in line to get tested, and asked her why she wanted to be tested. A live HIV testing session followed the interview. The purpose of this session was to provide the public with an understanding of the testing procedure and what to expect when one goes for an HIV test.
The last session included a brief interview with the same young lady after her test, discussing her thoughts and feelings around the testing process. Ndumi then informed everyone of their upcoming outreaches and plans for the rest of the month. Right at the end of the shoot, we all gathered to wish everyone a happy Valentine’s Day.
Ndumi was outstanding, a true professional. She knew exactly how to engage the audience and along with her team were able to create a lively atmosphere. Anelisiwe Piliso (Intern) filmed the live sessions, helped with the branding and stepped in wherever she was needed. Darian Faro (Junior IT Technician) provided much-needed advice in the build-up to the event and handled the setup of the sound system and connectivity. Ayanda, the new Communications Administrator, assisted with the branding and obtaining consent from those in attendance. Thank you, everyone!
We can do more
We are often looking to target a specific audience, and with boosted posts, we can do just that. Exciting times ahead, the possibilities are endless. Watch this space!
If you missed the Facebook Live, log on, like our page, and check out all the videos from the day.
Other Condom Week activations
Phatiswa De Wet from the Central Library in Cape Town invited TB HIV Care to be part of their ‘Month of Love’ activities by conducting a talk on condoms and using them correctly to combat the spread of HIV and STIs.
Phatiswa extended an invitation to local high schools and CPUT students to attend the session. Des Schouw (Training Coordinator) facilitated an interactive group activity where both male and female participants attempted a condom demonstration, with the audience assisting when they went wrong. The students asked many questions, and Des challenged the group by throwing back questions like;
- How safe is the condom?
- Do you know why female condoms are not well received?
- Have you seen a female condom before?The participants were eager and stayed engaged throughout the session. They requested that this be an ongoing event as many students come to the library on a Friday, and they would love to learn more. A request to return is a good indication that all went well.
Well done team!