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CategoriesRun4TB

Advocating for Change: WACI Health’s Impactful Engagement in World Tuberculosis Day Events

 

World Tuberculosis Day is a crucial moment for organizations like WACI Health to step up their advocacy efforts, and this year was no exception. Through active participation in the South African National AIDS Council (SANAC) Civil Society Forum (CSF) TB Task Team engagements, WACI Health spearheaded a series of impactful activities leading up to and on WTBD.

The journey began with four build-up activities, setting the stage for the main events on World TB Day. On March 20th, in a powerful display of solidarity, TB Affected Communities joined forces with civil society partners to march to the National Department of Health. Here, they delivered a Memorandum addressing critical issues: vehemently opposing health budget cuts and TB-related deaths, while also urging the government to declare TB as a national emergency.

The momentum continued on March 23rd with a TB Symposium hosted by the Ministry of Health (MoH). The symposium served as a platform to showcase the promising results of the Bedaquiline pilot and underscore the urgent need for scaling up efforts against multidrug-resistant TB (MDR TB).

Following the symposium, two Policy in Action sessions took center stage, each led by different sectors. The SANAC CSF Faith-Based Sector focused on raising awareness among youth and parents about TB testing and treatment, emphasizing the importance of early detection and intervention. Meanwhile, the People Living with HIV (PLHIV) Sector had the honor of hosting Gauteng Province Political Leaders and the Minister of Health. Prof Dyasi from SANARELA was entrusted with delivering the PLHIV Sector’s Memorandum to the MoH, highlighting key demands concerning HIV and TB.

On World TB Day itself, WACI Health took proactive steps by sending messages to key stakeholders, including the Head of State, Deputy President, MoH, National TB Program (NTP), and TB Caucus. The aim was to remind leaders of their commitments made during the TB High-Level Meeting and advocate for the integration of TB implementation into existing national processes.

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The day culminated in a significant action: the handover of a joint statement from civil society and TB Affected Communities to the South African government. This statement called for adequate funding for SANAC, recognizing it as the primary body supporting civil society and communities in the fight against TB and HIV.

In summary, WACI Health’s engagement in World TB Day events showcased collective efforts to drive meaningful change. By amplifying voices, raising awareness, and advocating for policy reforms, we are one step closer to achieving our goal of ending the TB epidemic in South Africa. 

 

Together, we can make a difference.

 

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