Today, 29 June 2011, marked an important date in the history of the Provincial AIDS Council in the Western Cape. It is the first meeting of this kind attended by NGO representatives that represent civil society and that are actively involved in HIV/AIDS-related work within communities and across all sectors.
Chaired by the Western Cape Minister of Health, Theuns Botha, the council meets on a quarterly basis. In an effort to establish a more representative council with participation of all sectors, Minister Botha invited nominations from various civil society organisations to the Council, who were subsequently officially appointed to the Council.
Minister Botha said: “I invited these organisations to participate as members of the Council, because I recognise the co-responsibility and the important role that NGOs and other partners play in our efforts to fight HIV/AIDS. I am very happy that these organisations are on board in order for the Council to have a truly representative nature.”
“The co-opting of these representatives onto the Council is our vote of confidence and recognition for the work these organisations do, and we value their work, the resources and the expertise they bring to the table,” said Minister Botha.
“We are winning the war against HIV/AIDS in the Western Cape with significant improvements over the past two years with the roll-out of ARVs and the HIV Counselling and Testing Campaign. NGOs form an important part of this roll-out,” added Minister Botha.
The Provincial AIDS Council is instituted in terms of national legislation and forms part of the overall South African National AIDS Council that determines national and provincial strategies for HIV/AIDS.
The new members are:
- Maureen van Wyk, representing the Networking AIDS Community in SA (NACOSA).
- Professor Harry Hausler, representing the TB HIV Care Association.
- Ntombozuko Kraai, representing the Treatment Action Campaign and People Living with HIV/AIDS.
- Avril Thomas and Peter Hawksley, representing Living Hope.
- Chris Steto, representing the YMCA (Young Men’s Christian Association).
- Susannah Farr, representing Gold Peer Education.
- Sharon Syce, representing the Ubomi Youth Foundation.
- Regina Mlobeli, representing the women’s sector on behalf of DKT South Africa.
- Andre Wagner, representing Hospice Palliative Care Association SA.
- Nicky Soboil, representing SACTWU workers’ health.
- Gillian Burrows, representing Disabled People of SA.
- Menaka Jayakody, representing Chain – the children’s sector.
- Dr Kathryn Pahl, representing Shout-It-Out.
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