HIV/Aids Unit exhibits at first HEAIDS conference

AIDS UNIT EXHIBITION: Deputy Minister of Higher Education and Training, Mduduzi Manana, and HIV/Aids Unit Co-ordinator, Melanie Marais, show one of the HIV-curriculum integration books developed by CPUT.

The HIV/Aids Unit presented an abstract and a poster during the recent inaugural Higher Education and Training HIV/Aids Project (HEAIDS) Conference, which was held in Durban.

The three-day conference saw a delegation of 4 600 students from around the country, mainly SRC members and Peer Educators, converging at the Durban International Conference Centre.

CPUT’s HIV Peer Educators and SRC representatives also attended the conference and manned the

Unit’s exhibition stall there.

HIV/AIDS Unit staff members, Melanie Marais and Naythan Kayser, presented an abstract titled “Make your mark by leading the change: Innovative methods of addressing information overload at Higher Education Institutions”, where they shared best practices of the HIV Peer Education Programme.

The HIV-curriculum integration poster designed by the unit displayed an easy explanation of how HIV was integrated into the curriculum of two courses as well as how three books were developed at CPUT.

The books, Student Guide: Roadmap to your social, mental and physical wellbeing; Guide 4 Life: Wellness Guide and How2BAidsAware, were launched by CPUT last month in favour of integrating HIV into the curriculum.

Marais added that there are plans to distribute the study material developed by CPUT at other institutions.

She says that participating in the conference afforded them an opportunity to network and collaborate with other institutions of higher education.

“It also made us look at our own prevention strategies around the ‘Blesser’ phenomenon that is a common problem and huge contributor to HIV infection amongst young women,” says Marais.

“Students also raised their concerns about sexual and gender-based violence that is plaguing our country.”


Leave a Comment