SIC has long sought to bridge the gap between urban HIV services and inaccessible rural populations in the areas where we work. In most places, this means reimbursing our clients for the cost of their transportation to the clinic, and for their lunch while waiting. But in areas with more patients, we have started a new initiative. Instead of bringing the patients to the health services, we are bringing the services to them.
SIC’s mobile Care and Treatment Center consists of a team of health professionals from the district hospital, appropriate patient files, and all the necessary medicines and lab supplies. Once a month on a pre-arranged date, the team comes out to a nearby clinic and provide a range of services from medications to adherence counseling. This saves time, is better for the patients’ health, and is cost-effective as well. With cooperation from the Tanzanian government, we are planning to scale up this initiative in the years to come.
Support Groups for People Living with HIV
Once people living with HIV are aware of their status and connected to SIC Community Health Workers, we encourage them to join together form support groups. Some active support groups work together on group projects to educate the community or generate income for group members. Income generating projects with SIC support groups have been supported by SIC, other organizations, and the government of Tanzania. These groups offer both encouragement and care to people living with HIV, promote healthy lifestyles and responsible sexual health choices, and spread information to the general community. They have been a key partner in combating stigma–the support groups encourage people to be more open about their status, which causes community members to be more accepting.
Our Tuko Pamoja Bags are made by artists who are living with HIV in the rural Tanzanian communities supported by SIC’s HIV/AIDS services.
By purchasing a Tuko Pamoja Bag you are giving these talented artists an opportunity use their skills to provide better nutrition and education for their families.
Additionally, your purchase will allow these artists to create a shared fund together with their HIV positive support groups. This fund will be used to pursue other income generating projects such as building a chicken coop or starting a community garden.
The Tuko Pamoja Bag fabrics are made in Morogoro, an area in Tanzania known for its high quality and vibrant fabrics. Tanzanians take pride in producing some of the most unique fabrics in Africa.
Tuko pamoja kuushinda UKIMWI! – We are united in the fight against AIDS!