summary HIV/AIDS has become
the single biggest killer in Southern Africa. In South Africa
it is estimated that 5 million people are currently living
with the virus and that their life expectancy is less than
Oxfam has been working in South Africa for over 30 years,
where KwaZulu-Natal province is the epicentre of
the AIDS pandemic with between 80,000-100,000 people infected,
but as few as 10% are aware of their HIV status. Oxfam is
working with partners as part of the Msunduzi Aids Strategy, a
local government initiative working on a 'best practice'
response to HIV/Aids. Drawing on all key players in the
City into a co-ordinated effort - one of only two such
projects world-wide using this approach with promising
In 2003, Trade plus Aid donated £13,000 to Oxfam in order
to employ and train an additional four Social Workers to work for LifeLine & RapeCrisis in Pietermaritzburg, who
specialise in working with the survivors of rape to prevent
new HIV infections and to provide counselling.
South Africa has the highest per capita rate of reported
rape in the world and many more rapes go unreported as children,
the young and women raped within a relationship are much less
likely to report rape to the authorities. An independent medical
study published in March 2003, estimated that in South Africa
fully one third of children under eighteen had been victims
of sexual abuse.
The Social Workers were based at strategic centres, local
hospitals, a Rape Crisis Centre and a Police sexual assault
unit. They are available to provide emergency assistance
plus on-going counselling, advice and support to ensure that
rape survivors receive anti-AIDS treatment, HIV testing, legal
advice and access to a Woman's Refuge.
Project Update Reports
For original project proposal, click
For further information on Oxfam visit www.oxfam.org.uk
For further information on LifeLine & RapeCrisis PMB visit www.lifeline.org.za.
This project is dedicated to the 1998 - 2002 staff:
Silvanna Velli, Jaye Fenelon, Olga Andrews, Kasia Krupa and
"More than 20,000 rapes of children
were reported in 2001 in South Africa."
"Rape Crisis estimates actual
figures could be much higher and there are various estimates
ranging from twice as high to 20 times higher. An important
point is that whatever the true figure - it's far too
"31 million people live with
HIV/AIDS in the developing world. It is ravaging African
economies by claiming the young and active."
"Six young people become infected
with HIV every minute."