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Neliswa Nkwali

Treatment Action Campaign - 2018 Fellow

Neliswa is a community advocate. She comes from the Eastern Cape Province where she became involved in politics in high school, as president of the student movement. Eastern Cape was marginalized in terms of job opportunities so she moved to Cape Town, seeking work during the time of heightened struggle against the HIV epidemic. She joined TAC after listening to their volunteers at a clinic. She was touched when hearing about the statistics of people who had died because of HIV-related illnesses with no interventions from the state.

Why I Want to Advocate for HIV Prevention in 2018
In South Africa, there is a high HIV infection rate in young girls between 14 to 25 years. There are various reasons for this but I believe one cause is that there is not enough noise around prevention advocacy. I want to help create demand for HIV prevention with young girls and to capacitate them to be able to protect themselves. I also want them to demand HIV prevention be included as part of a family planning package.

AVAC Advocacy Fellows Project: Taking Back Power with PrEP
Neliswa’s project taps her host organization Treatment Action Campaign’s historic advocacy pathways throughout South Africa, paving the way for PrEP rollout to adolescent girls and young women. The goal is to see initial PrEP rollout expand beyond sex workers and universities, integrated widely into public health facilities, including ANC and SRHR clinics as stated in South Africa’s Guidelines for Expanding Combination Prevention and Treatment Options. Through TAC’s networks, Neliswa mobilizes young women to demand PrEP and prepare for long-acting injectable PrEP, the dapivirine ring and multi-prevention technologies.

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Get in Touch

If you have any questions about the Fellows Program, or would like to reach out to a Fellow (current or alumni), e-mail us at fellows@avac.org.