KZN Health MEC happy with impact of HIV campaign on rural youth


JOHANNESBURG, February 27 – KwaZulu-Natal Health MEC, Sibongiseni Dhlomo, has said that he was delighted by the positive impact of the “She Conquers/DREAMS” campaign which is aimed at encouraging adolescent girls and young women to stay safe.

Dhlomo had on Monday visited the community of Vulindlela, Taylor’s Halt in the Midlands, and heard uplifting testimonials from the youth of school-going age who were empowered with information on the importance of abstinence from sex, the benefits of using condoms, undergoing medical male circumcision, and the use of female contraceptives.

Dhlomo also visited Taylor’s Halt Clinic, and commended its management for the effective running of a Youth User-Friendly health service, incorporating the “Happy Hour” initiative at the health facility during which young people are afforded access to sexual reproductive health services.

“We were excited to be in this area under Inkosi uZondi at Mpumuza, supported by Taylors Halt Clinic. This area had a high prevalence of HIV, and we, therefore, intervened, along with many of our partners, including CAPRISA, Health Systems Trust and we are beginning to see an impact, which we want to accelerate. Here, I was meeting children from various primary and high school, to assess the impact of She Conquers,” Dhlomo said.

“I’m happy to listen to the stories of these young people. There are high schools here that have reported zero teenage pregnancy last year. And that is something to be celebrated. We need to accelerate this and motivate these youngsters. These youngsters are not HIV positive. They do not have sexually transmitted infections, but they are at a very high risk of acquiring those infections if we don’t accelerate the programmes and preventative plans that we are putting in place.”

– African News Agency (ANA)