Jamra primary scholl for children affected by HIV/AIDS, drugs or poverty, Senegal (c) Nell Freeman/Alliance Participants in the Photovioce project, Ecuador © Marcela Nievas for the Alliance
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New Linking Organisation in Botswana

29
SEP
2011

Tshiamo Rantao Chair of BONELA, Uyapo Ndadi Director of BONELA and Christine Stegling, Associate Director of International HIV/AIDS Alliance at the official launch of BONELA (c) the Alliance

We are thrilled to welcome the Botswana Network on Ethics, Law & HIV/AIDS (BONELA) to the Alliance as our newest Linking Organisation.

Having met the Alliance’s 38 accreditation standards, BONELA has signed the Charter and Linking Agreement to become the newest member of the Alliance.

Christine Stegling, founder and ex-Director of BONELA was proud to attend the official launch of BONELA’s new partnership with the Alliance. BONELA staff, members of the board, Network members, NGOs, media and other stakeholders attended the event on Tues 27th September.

Focus on key populations

BONELA is a national network of individuals, groups and organisations focusing on protecting and promoting the rights of people infected and affected by HIV and AIDS in a country with an HIV prevalence rate of 24.8% for 15-49 year olds. It is the only NGO in the country with a particular focus on key populations, and its work has led to reforms in national policy and law. Since its registration in early 2002, BONELA has grown significantly in both staff and scope into a strong and highly recognized civil society voice in the fight against the HIV and AIDS pandemic in Botswana.

BONELA Chairperson Mr Tshiamo Rantao explains: “The organisation has positioned itself as the human rights beacon, working to ensure that the national response to HIV and AIDS will guarantee the rights of those who are affected, so that the nation can afford people living with HIV the quality of life and dignity they deserve”.

At the centre of its work, BONELA advocates for the integration of the concept of ‘Botho’ (human-ness) – the main pillar of human rights. BONELA’s work consists of four main components:

  • providing access to justice including legal aid,
  • conducting research on issues facing those affected by HIV to inform advoacy,
  • awareness raising and advocacy,
  • building partnerships and strengthening civil society, BONELA strives to create a just and enabling environment for people affected by HIV and AIDS.

Uyapo Ndadi, Director of BONELA commented “We can only express how privileged we feel to be associated with such an honourable giant in the world on human rights and HIV. This is a partnership that we cannot take lightly because being a member of the Alliance family means you have 38 other members of the family that you have to account to. So the eyes of the world are upon us to show the world that we have a competitive edge and that the benefits that the projects are designed to deliver in a unified way can be realised by the communities that we represent.”

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