EBE encourages HIV testing

03 September 2012 | Story by Newsroom

EBE HIV testingFrom left: Lee Kruse (2nd year-Electro Mech. Eng), Kweku Acquah (4th year Mechatronics), Dean Petersen, Natsai Verenga (4th year Civil Eng) and Vusi Baleni (4th year Civil Eng) wore the cause on their sleeves as they show their visual representation of the theme, constructing an AIDS-competent UCT.

The Faculty of Engineering & the Built Environment (EBE) collaborated with The Student Wellness Service and HAICU to host an HIV-testing drive for students and staff on 15 August.

Each year, EBE runs a campaign raising awareness about safety, environmental issues and health, with the focus this year being on HIV/AIDS. Dean of the faculty, Professor Francis Petersen, said it was crucial for members of the UCT community to know their statuses and be able to take the necessary action.

"This campaign is really to show visible leadership in the faculty and to encourage other students and staff to know their status," said Petersen. "That's the only way in which we can change this negative stigma associated with HIV/AIDS."

Mary Hilton, communication, development and marketing manager for EBE, said students were always eager to get tested. "This morning already there's been a queue," she reported early on the day of testing.

A technique called Photovoice, whereby participants constructed images with their hands about HIV, formed part of the EBE campaign and helped to show commitment at the university towards building an AIDS - competent UCT.

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