Healers join fight against Aids

Alex Matlala

Alex Matlala

In an effort to curb the escalating HIV-Aids prevalence in Limpopo, the Nchebeko Skills Consultancy in Modjadjiskloof will train traditional leaders and counsellors on HIV-Aids management skills.

The four-week training will start tomorrow in the five districts of the province.

About 1000 healers and 1500 counsellors who provide primary health-care in the province will receive training in courses such as preventing the spread of HIV-Aids.

The training will be facilitated by the Kgapane-based consultancy, which has more than 30 years experience in fighting the spread of HIV and Aids.

The training will be conducted in Kgapane township near Modjadjiskloof under the auspices of the provincial department of health and social development.

Graduates from this training will be expected to impart skills gained to other practitioners throughout the province.

Chief executive of the Nchebeko Skills Consultancy, Simon Mabelane, said yesterday that more than 50 traditional healers had completed training last year and more healers were expected to graduate this month.

Mabelane said traditional healers, especially those in rural areas, were well placed to participate in the fight against Aids.

"More often than not, people living with the disease consult traditional healers to save their lives.

"We therefore saw this as an opportunity to work with the traditional healers to win the battle against the deadly virus," he said.

"Graduates from this training would be expected to advise people with the virus to follow doctors' orders and to take their ARV medication as prescribed," Mabelane said.

Provincial spokesman for the health and social department, Phuti Seloba, said the fight against HIV-Aids infection can only be won if the government joined hands with the community.