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South Africa

Date Started:

2001

Locations (incl. clinics and nearby communities):

45

New Clients Enrolled (2018):

35,447

 

Mentor Mothers (2018):

92

Senior Portfolio Lead:

Caitlin Corcoran

Our work in South Africa

The birthplace of mothers2mothers (m2m), our South Africa country programme delivers our core services—prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT) and reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health (RMNCH)—while remaining at the forefront of our programmatic innovation and development. Our service lines also include early childhood development and adolescent health and youth programmes. The South African office recently launched a five-year initiative—”Children and Adolescents Are My Priority (CHAMP)” —that utilises m2m’s peer mentor model and innovative approaches to ensure that orphans and other vulnerable children and adolescents (OVCA) affected by HIV access health services, are started on

required treatment, and remain in care. m2m South Africa continues to provide technical assistance to governments and other NGOs to strengthen community systems that support young pregnant and breastfeeding women. In 2012, South Africa adopted the Mentor Mother Model as policy and embedded it into the formal healthcare system. Over the next five years, m2m worked on-the-ground in four provinces to prepare, hire, train, and supervise Mentor Mothers across 500 health facilities, and then gradually transitioned the programme to government ownership.

Sr. Sylvia Mzinyathi, Senior Professional Nurse and Youth Champion, Ikwezi Clinic, South Africa

Our Impact in South Africa

Virtual elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV among m2m’s enrolled clients, according to UNAIDS guidelines:

100%

of HIV-positive women enrolled at m2m were initiated on antiretroviral therapy (ART) for life.

94%

of HIV-exposed infants of enrolled m2m clients were given ART to protect them from infection.

99%

of these HIV-exposed infants were tested for HIV at 6-8 weeks.

6 – Our MTCT rate is comparable to the UNAIDS MTCT Indicator, as outlined in their guidelines available here: https://www.unaids.org/sites/default/files/media_asset/2017-Global-AIDS-Monitoring_en.pdf. National benchmark is based on the latest available UNAIDS data, published here: https://www.unaids.org/sites/default/files/media_asset/20190722_UNAIDS_SFSFAF_2019_en.pdf

Success Story

October 2019 marks 15 years since Colile Mashaba was diagnosed as HIV positive. She is employed by m2m as the District Coordinator in Ehlazeni, Mpumalanga. She recalls her emotional journey of acceptance:

I found out in 2004 that I was living with HIV. I fell pregnant a year later and my partner demanded that I terminate the pregnancy. I refused and we went our separate ways. I was living in fear and had not yet disclosed my status to my parents but things started to look up when I met mothers2mothers in 2009. Because the Mentor Mothers live and work in the community, they are always accessible to clients. These women went through the same difficulties and could relate to my struggles. On my worst days, I could visit any Mentor Mother at home for counselling. I joined mothers2mothers because I too wanted to make a difference in my community. The support they were giving pregnant women was simply outstanding. I wanted to be part of this positive change. I would not have been here today if it was not for the unconditional love I received from this wonderful organisation. I will forever be grateful for that.

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