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PSI moves closer to the people

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MATSAPHA—Legislators have a role to play in turning the AIDS pandemic around with the laws they enact.

This was said by PSI’s HIV Testing and Counselling Director Victoria Masuku during the launch of their new site at Big Tree Shopping Complex in Matsapha yesterday.

"At PSI we rejoice and are committed to positively touching people’s lives than making money. The new site will be accessed by more people. Our work is in support of government’s plans and policies," she said.

She encouraged people to know their HIV status and start afresh in life with this knowledge. She also urged companies to invite the CALAKABUSHA team to empower their employees with knowledge on HIV/AIDS at no charge.

She also explained that the ‘one love’ campaign was necessitated by results of a survey which revealed that in Swaziland new infections were from stable relationships. Population Services International (PSI) Swaziland moved to the new site to be closer to the people, which is a move fully supported by the Matsapha Town Board, said the Mayor, Themba Dlamini. "We believe the people are the town’s assets and we are happy to have a facility that will ensure that people live longer to use the town. Without the people there would be no Matsapha," he said. He noted that through knowing their status people could plan ahead effectively. He thanked PSI for the services and support they offered to people before and after testing. He also advised the youth to abstain and for those who had started sexual activities to know their status. He said abstinence had no regrets, an idea that was echoed by Manzini Health Administrator Mlondolozi Dlamini, who added that knowledge is power and advised the people to use the knowledge they got to live longer.

"Without knowledge people die, but with knowledge there is long life. PSI has the full support of the ministry of health. It pains us parents to lose our children through the pandemic when there is help available to spare their lives," he added. Over 400 people attended the event and 214 went home knowing their HIV status. Services offered by PSI include voluntary counselling and testing (VCT), distribution of condoms, maternal and child health products and will soon be going into male circumcision.

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