Connecting local responses around the world
I and my colleague gave an orientation on how to reduce stigma and discrimination against people living with HIV. This of course required us to talk about HIV itself – as well as human rights, client rights and health workers rights. What made the orientation especially unique was that here we followed CLC techniques and our audience were health workers.
Our work to curb stigma in the healthcare setting – in this case, our wish was to orient heath care workers form Government Hospital in Chitwan District, Nepal. But our approach is one that can be modeled elsewhere around the world, especially as stigma and discrimination continue to impede HIV prevention, testing and treatment efforts. Our audience appreciated our technique esp. Self-Assessment technique (to know about levels) and continued that when stigma can be reduced in different settings – whether it’s a clinic or a classroom – HIV program and services are more likely to be successful.
During the orientation, we led the session through a series of questions that helped them to know about their strengths, understand more about humanity, equality and human rights. The group work helped them to understand the concepts of stigma and discrimination. The self-assessment part helped them question their attitudes and behavior around issues of stigma and discrimination. Other parts such as dream building and action planning were awesome. They came with a single dream “To give their best in reduction of stigma and discrimination within their settings”. They committed to transfer what they learnt within their family, friends, and colleagues and community. The interesting part was that they decided to complete their action within 3 month.
Along the way, we will observe how these health workers process the information and feed it to people around them. Perhaps we’ll see small changes among them. We hope that providing orientation on stigma and discrimination against people living with HIV – will give health workers a roadmap for how to talk about the issue on health care settings.
Some important questions that were asked with health workers,