The event, organised by the clinic staff, commemorated and celebrated the lives of those who died of AIDS and people who are affected and infected by HIV. Through this event they aimed to create an enabling environment for community dialogue and consultation around HIV/AIDS and also to encourage people to test and get treatment, while at the same time also creating awareness of woman and child abuse.
One of the activities of the day was the establishment of a vegetable garden to help provide the sick and elderly with fresh and healthy food. A dialogue also took place between the elderly and youth on abuse and other moral issues. Other activities included entertainment by LoveLife and a candle-light ceremony.
‘People should start getting tested and start with treatment as early as possible to prevent people from coming to the clinic in wheelbarrows,’ said Nurse Charmaine Mokoena of Mphohadi Clinic. ‘The public should break the stigma around HIV, it is a part of us and people should remember that rights go with responsibilities and we should not abuse each other, abuse is not only physical it can be emotional also, we should be aware of that,’ said Mokoena.
Thamsanqa Majola is an OurHealth Citizen Journalist reporting from the Thabo Mofutsanyana health district in the Free State.