TB HIV Care’s Correctional Services Programme held a sensitisation training for the team on Friday, 02 February. Sensitisation is key to our service delivery and this recap training aimed to ensure staff competence in addressing inmate queries using appropriate language according to the latest CDC sensitisation curriculum.
The virtual training covered sensitive topics, including sexuality, gender, sexual behaviours, violence, abuse, and human rights. Recognising the need to empower staff, we focused on:
- Identifying and combatting stereotypes, stigma, and discrimination related to MSM.
- Facilitating open and confident communication about sex and sexuality with inmates to encourage PrEP uptake as a preventive measure.
- Providing essential information on HIV transmission risk and risk reduction strategies within the DCS context. Staff were equipped with HIV prevention strategies, including PrEP & PEP.
The session encouraged interaction, with team members actively engaging and sharing their wealth of experience. This interaction promoted team cohesion among CSP staff members assigned to various correctional centres across five provinces.
We eagerly anticipate the upcoming second session, where we will address substance use and discrimination.
In the lead-up to World AIDS Day, members of the abaThembu Royal Family in OR Tambo District in the Eastern Cape, led by His Majesty King Zwelibanzi Dalindyebo, decided to throw their weight behind a campaign that emphasises the importance of HIV treatment adherence and retention in care.
Treatment adherence was just one of the challenges addressed at the Eastern Cape’s AIDS Day commemoration, which was held at the North End Stadium in Matatiele on Friday, 01 December. The Royal Family encouraged members of all communities to attend, and they will continue to facilitate community engagement by hosting advocacy workshops and seminars, meetings with traditional leaders within the Kingdom, and cultural events to engage directly with affected individuals and provide support and education.
In addition, the King Dalimvula Matanzima Foundation (KDMF) has agreed to partner with TB HIV Care to address the intertwined challenges of tuberculosis and HIV in the Eastern Cape – a cause that resonates with KDMF’s commitment to community upliftment.
Both royal families recognise the pivotal role they can play, and look forward to leveraging their networks, resources, voice and influence to bring about positive change – and transform the health and wellbeing of their people.
Many thanks to Siphamandla Mabesi, TB HIV Care Communications Coordinator, who is driving this initiative and working hard to build strong relationships with key stakeholders in the Eastern Cape.
On Friday, 1 December TB HIV Care attended a number of World AIDS Day events around the country, including the National Event in Mandeni, KZN; the Eastern Cape Provincial Event in Matatiele; and the Western Cape Provincial Event in Khayelitsha, where TB HIV Care joined the community in raising the voices of the youth, paving the way for the younger generation to lead the way to health and wellness.
Our Correctional Services Programme celebrated the day with the Rustenburg Area Commissioner Officer of Correctional Services in LMN (Limpopo, Mpumalanga and North West), who invited TB HIV Care to deliver a talk on U=U and the linkage of released inmates back into the community.
Our Key Populations team marked the day with a special outreach in Wynberg, where HIV testing services were offered to clients and residents.