In economic terms, South Africa is in a better overall position than its neighbours but it is also the world’s most unequal country. With a prevalence rate of 18.9%, it is one of the most HIV/AIDS-affected countries in the world.
A country with huge inequality
While South Africa has made great progress in combating HIV in recent years, the number of new infections remains high. A quarter of a million children are growing up with HIV, many of whom have lost their parents to the disease and live in extreme poverty. Together with its local partners, SolidarMed works to sustainably improve the health and wellbeing of children affected by HIV and their caregivers.
South Africa in numbers
119 deaths per 100,000 births
Infant mortality under 5 years
32 deaths per 1,000 births
Doctors per 10,000 people
8 (Switzerland: 44)
South Africa in numbers
SolidarMed in South Africa
Through the projects ‘Children for Change’ and ‘Ilitha’, SolidarMed works with local partner organisations to support children, adolescents and caregivers in Johannesburg and East London, providing healthcare, education and economic stability.
Window of Hope:
Life in Johannesburg’s run-down centre and informal settlements is hard. Residents are traumatised by violence, physical and emotional neglect, displacement, social and economic exclusion, poverty and HIV/AIDS. This leads to widespread hopelessness, apathy, alcoholism and drug use. The loss of a whole generation of parents to HIV/AIDS means that many children have lost loved ones and are living with grandparents, aunts or uncles.
SolidarMed and local partner organisation, Sophiatown Community Psychological Services (SCPS), help children and caregivers who are affected by HIV and living in poverty to break the cycle of depression and helplessness and to take ownership of their lives.
Children and adolescents living in poverty and affected by HIV in informal settlements and on farms around the South African city of East London are often lacking the parental affection, upbringing, stimulation, academic support and medical care they need for healthy development. They therefore end up in their parents’ vicious circles of poverty, poor education, unemployment and a lack of prospects, alcohol and drug use, right through to domestic violence. In short, an environment in which HIV can easily spread.
SolidarMed has been working with local partner organisation, Jika Uluntu, to support these children and adolescents and their parents since 2017. Its work aims to help strengthen physical and mental health, improve school attendance and performance, and boost the economic resilience of households. SolidarMed is therefore helping to give children and adolescents the chance of a brighter future.
Programmes Zambia, South Africa, Kenya, India
Tel. +41 41 310 66 60
Projects in South Africa
SolidarMed, together with its local partner organizations, helps poverty- and HIV-affected, traumatized children and caregivers break the cycle of depression and helplessness and supports them in actively and responsibly shaping their lives.