Strengthening Capacity to Advocate for the Health and Well-Being of Women Living with HIV and AIDS in Botswana

By NatalieRDS | November 29th, 2011

Women in Botswana struggle to access their sexual and reproductive health rights. Those infected with, and affected by, HIV/AIDS struggle even more because of the stigma and discrimination they experience from health care workers, family members and the community.

The state has failed to provide legislative and policy frameworks that safeguard the sexual and reproductive health, and rights, of these women; even when policies do exist, they are not implemented. All these factors result in women not making independent sexual and reproductive health choices.

The goal of this project is to strengthen the capacity of the Bomme Isago Association (BIA), and its members, to advocate for improved access to sexual and reproductive health, and rights.

The specific objectives that will assist in achieving this goal include; first, informing, empowering and supporting women infected with, and affected by, HIV to demand, and practice, their sexual and reproductive health rights.

Secondly, this project will strengthen, and mobilise community support for the improvement of sexual and reproductive health and rights of women infected with, and affected by, HIV.

Finally, changes in public health policies, and practices, through the appropriate provision of law, will be advocated for. All this will increase access to, and enjoyment of, sexual and reproductive health and rights by women infected with, and affected by, HIV in Botswana.

The BIA works in eight districts in Botswana. The project will identify one case in four districts where women’s rights on sexual and reproductive health have been violated, and engage in advocacy to resolve these issues. A report on these resolutions will be produced and shared with other districts and stakeholders.

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