Stories

A provincial antiretroviral therapy nurse, peer educator, and MWENHO peer navigator gather after a training. Photo credit: LINKAGES/MSH

Until LINKAGES Angola developed an instrument to assess a person’s risk for contracting HIV and identify key populations, the Associação de Mulheres Vivendo com o VIH e SIDA, or MWENHO, did not have a way of indicating with certainty if they worked with key populations or not.Through LINKAGES, MWENHO hired peer navigators—persons living with HIV who could mentor others on how to overcome the challenges of starting and adhering to treatment for HIV.

The 20th International Conference on AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections in Africa (ICASA) is being held in Kigali, Rwanda this week, from Dec 2-7. The forum serves as a platform to take stock of achievements and challenges impeding progress toward the UNAIDS’ global 90-90-90 targets and pave the way for efficient innovation and collaboration toward reaching epidemic control in Africa.MSH’s Dr.

Counselors from Cuidados da Infancia accompany clients to a health facility. Photo credit: LINKAGES/MSH

While civil society organizations in Angola have improved their ability to reach key populations (KPs) through the cascade of HIV prevention and testing services, they faced challenges linking those who test positive to care and treatment. The rate of initiation of antiretroviral treatment (ART) in the first seven months of the LINKAGES Project was only 19 percent (11/53).To improve this rate, LINKAGES began investing in strategies to strengthen the bond between HIV counselors and clients.

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