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About SHARC

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					About SHARC
Some
Background…
Started in 2003, the Student
HIV/AIDS Resistance Campaign
(SHARC) was formed by a group of
Rhodes students as a response to
the lack of awareness surrounding
HIV/AIDS on campus.

Since then, SHARC has become the
largest and most active society on
campus. We currently have 485
members and we remain at the
centre of the University’s response
to HIV/AIDS.
What we do…
Peer Education
The SHARC Peer Education
programme trains Rhodes
University students to facilitate
workshops on safe sexual practices
and the social issues surrounding
HIV/AIDS – including stigma,
disclosure and general awareness.

Workshops are held for all first
year students during O-week and
throughout the year in local high
schools.

Peer-Ed is one of the most active
of SHARC’s portfolios – with 175
students signing up at the
beginning of 2009 to train to
become Peer-Eds!
Community
Engagement
 Work with local HIV/AIDS
organisations, especially with
children who are infected or
affected by HIV/AIDS.

A tutoring/mentoring programme
which involves helping high school
learners with their school work and
assigning personal mentors to
children infected or affected by
HIV/AIDS, many of whom are
from child-headed households.

 A number of fundraising
initiatives and collections of food,
books, clothes and toiletries.
Testing &
Services
SHARC holds regular testing
drives on campus – this year,
companies such as NewStart were
also invited to run testing drives
and ensure that as many students
as possible could be tested

SHARC ensures that condoms
and femidoms are distributed
throughout the University in easily
accessible locations

This year, SHARC produced
posters that detailed patients’
rights in connection with
HIV/AIDS. These were distributed
to local clinics as well as Settler’s
Hospital.
        YEAH!
The YEAH! Initiative (Youth for
the Education and Activism of
HIV/AIDS) aims to train high
school learners to be peer
educators in their own schools.

On the first weekend of May
2009, SHARC held the YEAH!
Camp – where 35 high school
learners participated in a number
of workshops in which they learned
about HIV/AIDS in its social
context.

Since then, the YEAH! Peer
Educators have held numerous
workshops on HIV/AIDS in their
various high schools.
     Activism
 During this HIV/AIDS Awareness
Week, SHARC will be running the
‘SHARC Demands Campaign’, in which
we will march, hold a panel discussion
and put together a petition to demand a
more pro-active institutional response to
HIV/AIDS at Rhodes, as well as a
permanent Task Officer.

SHARC believes that our government
should be held accountable, especially in
terms of a progressive response to
HIV/AIDS. SHARC members
participated in protests and questioning
at the ANCYL rally and the Election
Debate during Human Rights Week.
      Gender
      issues
SHARC was actively involved in this
year’s ‘Anti Sex and Gender-Based
Violence Week’ – particularly in the
‘My Body, My Choice’ exhibition, in
which female volunteers were
photographed in the nude with
placards bearing messages that
sought to reclaim the female body
as a personal space. Several SHARC
members also participated in the
‘Sexual Violence = Silence’ Protest,
which aimed to raise awareness
about the fact that 8 in 9 women in
South Africa are raped and never go
on to report the rape.
                Media
SHARC has been responsible for a number of media
and informational campaigns this year, including:

• Distributing pamphlets on basic HIV/AIDS
transmission, prevention and testing

•Information boards on the link between HIV/AIDS
and alcohol, and HIV/AIDS and Sexual &
Reproductive Rights.

•The ‘How HIV Affects me campaign’, in which Rhodes
students were given the chance to tell their stories in
relation to HIV/AIDS in their lives.

•SHARC also gave a presentation on how to sensitively
report on issues surrounding HIV/AIDS at the Media
Sensitivity Workshops held by the Oppidan Press in
the first term.
Beneficiaries
All proceeds from the SHARC Art & Wine
Auction will go towards helping children and
teenagers who are infected or affected by
HIV/AIDS.

A donation will be made to the Raphael
Siyaphumelela Programme, which provides
education and support for teenagers from the
age of 16 onwards. The Siyaphumelela
initiative includes week-long camps which
focus on promoting safe sex, abstinence,
faithfulness and self-esteem.

SHARC also hopes to use the proceeds from
the Art & Wine Auction to create a sustainable
bursary fund which will provide young people
infected or affected by HIV/AIDS with the
opportunity to pursue a tertiary education.

				
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