Programmes » HIV Counselling And Testing

From January to the end of October our HCT team tested 1 959 people for HIV and screened for TB and STIs. 76% of these were youth (12-25 years), sex workers and couples, regarded as the most at-risk groups by the International AIDS Society. More than every second person who tested HIV positive is voluntarily involved in regular, monthly follow-up consultations with Zodwa and Nomfundo.

Apart from discussing disclosure, treatment intake, impact on social relationships, adherence challenges and solutions, our team has given support for clinic visits, has helped access treatment, and has made referrals to FAMSA and referrals for CD4-cell count tests, TB and STI tests.

Zodwa says about her HIV follow-ups: "Always, what stands out for me is to see how much of this work is built upon trust! Also, great moments are when you see that people you tested HIV positive have accepted their status and managed to disclose to their family or friends."

From January to the end of October we tested over 1 079 young people aged between 15 and 24 years. Almost 65% of all youth tested were adolescent girls and young women. Young women are the most at risk accounting for a quarter of the new infections last year. To reach youth, we implemented two projects which run throughout the year: 1) "Khanya – Be SMART" (which we consider one of our most significant activities), 2) "YOLO" (You Only Live Once). The latter was a pilot project by the Department of Social Development and involves a five-module resilience training programme for learners from high schools. Here, Zodwa and Nomfundo worked closely with over 70 students from Nyaluza High School. YOLO (You Only Live Once) was held by Nomfundo (HCT team) together with Sani (ABCD) team at our Siya Sonke Youth Camp at Hobbiton, Fairewood in October

Zodwa and Nomfundo visited two local high schools called Nyaluza and Nombulelo High School to hold HIV and reproductive health discussions with all classes between Grade 8 and Grade 12. Apart from assessing what learners know, Zodwa and Nomfundo triggered interesting dialogues about teenage pregnancy, sugar daddies, healthy relationships, pride and self-confidence, sexual relationships, STIs, as well as HIV prevalence in their age group. 617 students