Pwojè SIDA HIV Testing Initiative
Port-au-Prince, Haiti, August 27th 2016 - In partnership with Izolan Oye Oye, Fondation Esther Boucicault Stanislas (FEBS), Health Education Action League (HEAL Haiti), and other community partners, Konbit Mizik organized a major concert and HIV testing initiative on Rue Chevannes in downtown Port-au-Prince, Haiti. We provided rapid oral HIV testing to a total of 640 people and linked 30 reactive individuals for follow up testing and care at the nearest Gheskio Centre, FOSREF Clinic, or the General Hospital in accordance with Haiti Ministry of Health Protocols. Additionally, we distributed 5,000 ONE Condoms and myth-busting facts and health education to the community.
We estimate that we had over 1 million media impressions between TV/radio/social media (Click here to watch our TV spot) and we are currently compiling and editing footage of the event for a short documentary film in English and Kreyol, which will include HIV facts and resource information for the Haitian general population.
Major statistical takeaways:
- a much higher prevalence rate than we expected - 4.7% vs. 2%.
(from 133 surveys completed)
- 64% of respondents were male
- 55% of respondents had previously taken an HIV test
- over 50% of respondents have completed high school or university
- over 74% of respondents have "little or no fear" of HIV/AIDS
We will continue to analyze the data and look for correlations within this sample population between age, educational level, previous HIV test, and other variables on which we have data.
With Pwojè SIDA, our inclinations proved correct that in order to beat AIDS in Haiti and around the world by eliminating new infections and connecting people to antiretroviral therapy, we must build on this model of bringing testing to the street level, deep in the hearts of the communities where people live, breaking down fear and stigma and hyping up testing with celebrity star power. Pwojè SIDA was a great first step to bridge the gap between where an individual lives and the nearest free HIV clinic, even if it’s not far away.
In conclusion, on behalf of Konbit Mizik, our community partners and sponsors, volunteers and friends, from the bottom of our hearts, we thank you. Pwojè SIDA was, and is possible, because of you.