HIV/AIDS: Who Does What in Manzini City?
In line with her Mission Statement which, amongst others, puts emphasis on the importance of the
Municipality partnering with its stakeholders, the Municipal Council of Manzini has in the recent past
formed what is referred to as a Municipal HIV/AIDS Team (MHT); which team comprises 18 Non-
Governmental Organisations (NGOs) that are involved in providing a response to various HIV/AIDS
thematic areas in the city of Manzini. Chaired by Council Chief Executive Officer, Lungile Dlamini, the
objectives of the MHT are to ensure that, through information sharing and networking, HIV and AIDS
related programmes are well coordinated within the City of Manzini.
The latest MHT meeting was held last Thursday at the Council Chamber and was also attended by Councillors. Each of the organisations that made it to the meeting took turns narrating its service provision, recent achievements, challenges and plans for the year 2020. Please read on and be empowered with information on what each organisation is doing…
MUNICIPAL COUNCIL OF MANZINI
The Municipal Council of Manzini, an urban government that is formed on the basis of the Urban
Government Act, 1969, is highly involved in the fight against HIV and AIDS. The Municipality is not
only a convener for the MHT but also runs a massive HIV and AIDS programme in partnership with
AMICALL Eswatini. Together with partners such as AIDS HealthCare Foundation Eswatini and the
Population Services International PSI, the Municipality runs the LaMvelase Help Centre which
provides HIV and AIDS related services to well over 16,000 clients free of charge. Located at the
corner of Nkoseluhlaza and Sandlane streets, the LaMvelase Help Centre is the largest HIV and AIDS
response establishment in the Kingdom of Eswatini.
For more details, the LaMvelase Help Centre may be contacted on 2508 5091. The Municipality also provides a number of cross-cutting psycho-social programmes including care for orphaned and vulnerable children in eight social centres, community PMTCT services (prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV) in the urban
communities, youth peer education, condom distribution, community education as well as facilitates
wellness sessions within the Manzini corporate sector. Through support from partners, the
Municipality has just completed the first phase of an Autism Centre. It has also recently completed a
Located just below St Theresa’s Clinic, this faith-based charity organisation serves as a hospice
facility; providing a home for the terminally ill including HIV and AIDS as well as cancer patients. It
also provides intensive physiotherapy for people who are physically challenged. Also provided are
education services for care-givers who form part of its staff as well as family members of those
admitted in the facility. It also has a programme that prepares seriously ill patients for a dignified
death. Since patients are required to provide their own meals, one of the challenges faced is a poor
diet by some of the clients due to poverty. That is why the organisation welcomes donations of any
kind from citizens and the business sector. Donations would help the organisation provide food
parcels to clients that do not afford a balanced meal. The Hope House may be contacted on 2505
WOMEN TOGETHER PROJECTS
Based next to Women and Children Hospital, along Kelly Street, Women Together Projects
provides TB literacy education for support groups. It also holds community forums on Global Fund
country structures and processes. One of its achievements has been increased knowledge on TB
signs, symptoms, treatment and prevention mechanisms amongst support group members and their
communities. The organisation has also created a pool of TB/HIV champions. Challenges faced are
dwindling donor funds as well as civil society misconception about their role in the overall health
sector of Eswatini. Going forward, the organisation has set out to rollout SRHR (Sexual Reproductive
Health Rights) education on mothers living with HIV as well as intensify advocacy and resource
mobilisation. The organisation may be contacted on 2505 6357.
AIDS HEALTHCARE FOUNDATION
Headquartered in Manzini within the LaMvelase Help Centre, Aids HealthCare Foundation Eswatini
provides services relating to HIV Prevention, Treatment, Care and Support, Sexual and
Reproductive Health. The organisation handles over 16,000 patients who are on HIV treatment. By
December 2019, it had carried out over 8, 200 HIV tests and over 1,000 were new Anti-Retroviral
Therapy (ART) initiations. The organisation faces space challenges at LaMvelase Help Centre; which
stands as its largest clinic.
This is exacerbated by the fact that patients tend to be unwilling to attend clinic after the lunch hour. Another challenge is that some clients disengage from care and treatment. In the year 2020 the organisation is looking at extending linkages and retention, embarking on extension of the LaMvelase Help Centre, expanding cervical cancer screening, increasing targeted testing and strengthening its appointment system. For more details, the
Foundation may be contacted on 2505 6496.
ACTS OF FAITH
Acts of Faith is an NGO whose service offering includes home-based care, OVC care, HIV and
AIDS and services on other cross cutting issues. Its offices are located at Ela Coat building
opposite Mandlenkhosi building, Manzini. It has two caregivers who are working at KaKhoza and
Ngwane Park. The one who is based at KaKhoza is taking care of six clients. Some of its clients have
actually recovered and are back in normal employment. The organisation also provides support to
orphaned and vulnerable children. It recently facilitated for three children to get birth certificates
whilst an additional four were assisted to benefit from a back-to-school programme.
The organisation also attended a psycho-social workshop at KaKhoza; which workshop was attended by
over 130 people. Like most NGOs, the organisation is faced with resource challenges against a high
demand for its services. One of its planned projects for the year 2020 is training of pastors on
Gender-Based Violence (GBV), facilitation of community dialogues on GBV, psycho-social support
and training of support groups and caregivers. The organisation can be contacted on 2505 5293.
THE CHURCH FORUM ON HIV/AIDS
Located along Tenbergen Street, Coates Valley, The Church Forum on HIV/AIDS is an NGO that
provides HIV and AIDS and cross cutting services. It has recorded quite a number of
achievements in the recent past. It has implemented Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD)
services for children with special needs in targeted communities. It has also organised sensitization
sessions on special needs and disabilities of children.
These sensitisation meetings were meant to assist caregivers and community members to easily identify children with disabilities and special needs so that they can get assistance. As a result, some children have been identified and referred to health institutions such as the National Psychiatric Centre, Nazarene Hospital and Cheshire Homes
for intervention. The organisation has also partnered with Men Engage towards training of church
leaders on intimate partner violence. The organisation may be contacted on 2505 7035.
RALEIGH FITKIN MEMORIAL HOSPITAL
The Eswatini Nazarene Health Institutions runs the 350-bed regional Raleigh Fitkin Memorial
Hospital. A bouquet of HIV related services are provided by the hospital. These include Anti-
Retroviral Therapy (ART), Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT), Prevention of Mother To Child
Transmission (PMTCT), voluntary male medical circumcision, Baylor pediatric aids foundation, a one-
stop facility for gender-based violence, a Tuberculosis (TB) unit, food by prescription (World Food
Programme) and Cervical screening. Its achievements include a positive success rate as the life span
has been elongated. The hospital may be contacted at 2508 4000.
NATIONAL TB HOSPITAL
The National TB Programme is tasked with the provision of Tuberculosis (TB) preventive and curative
services at national level. Because of the high rate of TB/HIV co-infection, the mandate of the
National TB programme spirals even to smaller general public health facilities through decentralized
services. This comes in many forms including training of staff on infection control and, to some
extent, provision of equipment and consumables. Situated along the MR3 road, the hospital can be
contacted on 2505 7951.