Models of resilience by HIV affected communities, MSM and IDUs of Tanzania and Uganda: Using 6 Abstracts to present on such experiences

Published: January 31, 2012

The interplay of rights, visibility and inclusion as the vehicles towards HIV
cure; show casing Center for Human Rights Promotion-CHRP- activities
targeting MSM, TG and IDU in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania from 2010-2011.
Emmanuel Kandusi, Julius Kyaruzi and Thomas Muyunga

BACKGROUND: Animus towards MSM, TG and IDU impacts negatively in the drive
to an HIV cure. Inclusiveness is part of comprehensive HIV prevention. The bifocal
nature of the epidemic at national and in key affected populations calls for
appropriate strategies. This paper highlights the relevance of involvement of expert
MSM, TG and IDU in eradicating HIV.

METHODS: CHRP has a resource centre in major divisions of Dar-es-Salaam
targeting over 500 MSM, 300 IDU and 250 TG. The major sites are in Kinondoni,
Mwananyamala, Hannanasif, Kijitonyama, Ndugumbi, Mwenge and Magomeni. The
resource centre is run by coordinators. The centre has 13 community field officers
who empower IDUs to benefit from the needle/syringe cleaning activities, in
anticipation of government facilitated needle/syringe programme; those under
methadone management are reminded by phone. MSM and TG are encouraged to
form support groups as improved peer mobilisation towards HIV prevention. Major
health facilities were used as referral units for further management of cases.

RESULTS: 2326 beneficiaries accessed appropriate services addressing their
needs. Brochures on needle/syringe exchange, risks of flush-blood, malaria, AIDS
and TB were provided in local languages. 3 major life planning skills seminars were
used to design and test a five year strategic plan targeting MSM, TG and IDU.
Through planned outreach services it was possible to conduct awareness drives,
VCT services, provide required commodities, respond to needs, engage health
workers at facilities to receive referred clients and respond to psycho-social needs.

CONCLUSION: Inclusion brings on board marginalized persons, and most at risk
populations, it makes them demand services and engage in health preserving
practices.

RECOMMENDATION: MSM, TG, IDU inclusion is a right and an empowerment that
improves visibility. More report earlier for treatment and this improves on quality of
life. This is key to comprehensive prevention that will lead to HIV cure.
 

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