Our Eswatini team marked a historic milestone earlier this month – its 15th anniversary of providing lifesaving care and treatment to people living with HIV in the country! The “Keeping the Promise”-themed commemoration was highlighted by unveiling the LaMvelase Center of Excellence, a state-of-the-art facility and AHF’s largest clinic worldwide.
Click here to watch a short recap of the commemoration!
The newly constructed building, a joint project between AHF and the Manzini Municipality, will house the country program office and host expanded spaces for HIV prevention, care, treatment, and other related services for the over 15,000 patients it serves. In all, the Eswatini team provides HIV/AIDS care and treatment to over 33,500 clients throughout six clinics nationwide.
“Today started as a dream seventeen years ago, at the height of the HIV epidemic in [then] Swaziland, when medical non-profit founders working in the country, Anita Williams, Dr. Condessa Curley, and Madam Mhlanga of the Swaziland Ministry of Health, called AHF’s Michael Weinstein, asking if they would please open a clinic in this wonderful Kingdom of Swaziland,” recalled Williams and Curley, Members of AHF’s Board of Directors. “Seventeen incredible years later, we celebrate that extremely successful dream—Michael and AHF, we all thank you for saying YES!”
Over the years, AHF Eswatini’s work has been characterized by impressive partnerships at all levels. In 2006, AHF became partners with the Ministry of Health to establish a place to care for people living with HIV, including providing ART, at the LaMvelase Help Center. By the following year, AHF entered a Memorandum of Understanding with numerous government and civil society partners to establish the LaMvelase Clinic in Manzini.
Click here to view photos of the celebration!
“Today’s dual celebration is a testament to AHF’s commitment to the national HIV/AIDS response and providing quality, patient-centered care to the communities we serve,” said Dr. Penninah Iutung, AHF Africa Bureau Chief. “However, these accomplishments and the growth we have recorded in Eswatini would not be possible without the tireless efforts of our staff, the support from the Manzini Municipality, the patient community, and the collaborations with government and partners all these years, and for that, we are grateful.”
“Eswatini has made great strides towards eliminating HIV as a public health threat by 2030, and we are proud as AHF to have been part of this in a major way,” added Dr. Nkululeko Dube, Country Program Manager for AHF Eswatini. “Fifteen years of service later, this iconic building and Center of Excellence is a recommitment to ‘Keeping the Promise,’ and the spirit of partnership continues till this day.”