In 2011 we made our first disbursement of £1,500 to the Paballong HIV/AIDS Centre to fund the 2011 World AIDS Day campaign. Here is the report of the day prepared by Paballong Management:
To commemorate World Aids Day on 1st December 2011, the Paballong Centre received a donation from Paballong Trust UK, to do the celebration. The theme for this year’s celebration was ‘Zero deaths related to HIV/Aids; Zero new infections of HIV; and Zero discrimination’. To strengthen the theme to our context, we added a slogan for the day which was ‘Know our status and live longer’. Our main aim this year was to reach hard-to-reach groups in the communities, such as herd boys, men, youths and people who never visit health centres, with information and education relating to HIV/Aids and the essential health services that are provided by the Centre. The idea was to reach the targeted population through:
- health talks by health workers
- testimony by some willing patients
- community leaders’ support and involvement in fighting the pandemic
- pamphlets, information education and communication materials (IEC)
- T-shirts with HIV/AIDS messages
- edutainment (dance groups, drama, singing).
Our celebration started at 0630 in the morning when 100 T-shirts with the message Rua Tsebo me o phele on the back were distributed, and then at 0715 an estimated 5km fun walk started from the place called Lekhalong la baloi to Ha Senekane football ground, where the celebration took place. During the fun walk HIV/Aids songs were sung. The ceremony at the football ground kick-started with a cattle demonstration – race and walk – which the crowd really enjoyed. At 1000 the ceremony started with a prayer and the official opening by Paballong Management. Activities for the day were:
HIV/Aids information and education (epidemiology of HIV/Aids in Lesotho)
Testimony by some willing patients (disclosure)
HIV testing and counselling
Entertainment group (Mokhibo and Ntlamo dance)
Life-skills presentation by youth members from the Good Shepherd Health Centre
Drama by the Social Stigma Group
- An estimated number of between 350 and 450 people were reached with HIV/Aids information and education.
- 50 people got tested for HIV (18 females and 32 males), of whom 6 tested HIV positive.
- An estimated 400 people were served with lunch.
In addition to the community, there were officials and other organisations present including:
- Koali Health Centre with its Village Health Workers who assisted with counselling and testing
- Members of the Community Council D07
- Chief of Senekane area
- Different church leaders
- Sefikeng Police
- District Health Management Team (DHMT) representatives
- Neighbouring schools with pupils and teachers.
Paballong Staff would like to pass their sincere gratitude to all above mentioned officals, organisations and all those who attended; without you the celebration would not have been successful.
Special thanks to Paballong trust UK for their notable gesture; without their donation we would not have had that special day for infected and affected.