AIDS remains a crisis worldwide, but in a country with 7.7 million people living with HIV, South Africa’s epidemic is made even worse by sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV)—an unfortunate component that fuels approximately 1,500 new HIV infections every week among adolescent girls and young women ages 15-24.
Click above to watch the short but impactful video of Silent Protest
To give a voice to survivors of sexual assault, AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) South Africa and partners held Silent Protest actions in locations where up to 60% of women are HIV positive in some communities. Two universities (Cape Town and KwaZulu-Natal) hosted events that spanned five days and included a march, campus gatherings with hundreds of participants and information on how to access healthcare services.
“If we’re to reduce new HIV infections, we must address sexual and gender-based violence,” said Larissa Klazinga, Regional Policy and Advocacy Manager for AHF South Africa. “These events that we and our partners hold are critical for bringing awareness. Whether from coercive intimate partner sexual intercourse without a condom or from rape—evidence shows a clear correlation between sexual violence and an increased risk of HIV transmission.”
AHF invites you to watch and share this short but impactful video of Silent Protest 2019. By being aware and involved, you can play a role in ending sexual and gender-based violence—whether in South Africa or in your own community.
Click the collage above to see more photos!