Namibia Economist (Windhoek)

Namibia: New Track for HIV Message

The Ministry of Information and Communication Technology (MICT) in conjunction with the Global Fund Namibia conducted a training and information workshop in Windhoek aiming to change HIV/AIDS behaviour and social communications.

In a statement released this week, the MICT-directorate of print media affairs said the Training of Trainers (ToT) at the workshop was part of a new initiative under the "Break the Chain HIV/AIDS MICT/Global Fund roll-out campaign." The awareness campaign that is set to start early this year.

According to the MICT statement, the training and information session are vital for prevention, care and treatment in reducing the current infection rate in the Khomas region. Later in the campaign, the focus will expand to the entire country.

Experts in behaviour made several presentations to the trainers at the workshop. The aim is to grow the reach of the communication campaign into a multi-level channel for communicating the vital message during phase 2 of the Break the Chain campaign. Amongst other elements, it focused on renewed awareness among the public, and the introduction of tools for Inter-Process Communication advocating the principles of prevention, and how to apply them.

The discussion includes solutions to the spread, increase and impact of HIV/AIDS, alcohol, unprotected sex and multiple concurrent partners, tobacco and other drugs within the communities that are most severely affected.

Furthermore, the workshop also provide a platform for a discussion and recommendations on how communication should substantially deal with the complexity of social issues surrounding the pandemic such as stigma and discrimination, disclosure and confidentiality requirements of health practitioners.

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