The Treatment Campaign Action has launched the “Treatment Project” to provide antiretroviral drugs to its most needy members. For each TAC member on ARV therapy, a non-TAC member who needs the life-prolonging drugs will be treated. Some 110 TAC members have died from AIDS related illnesses between March and July this year alone.
THANDEKA: U-Eduard Grebe uthi elicandelo lijongene nokunikezelwa ngezithomalalisi kwitsholongwane kagawulayo liphulo leTAC nelijongene nokunikezelwa kwezi zithomalalisi kwabo balufuna ngamandla.
Translation: Eduard Grebe says the Treatment Project is organizationally, administratively and financially independent of the Treatment Action Campaign but was established by TAC to make anti retroviral treatment available to treatment access activists who are in need of treatment.
EDUARD: The board of the TAC Treatment Project has recently decided to make an equal number of treatment slots available to treatment access activists and to people in community who are not directly involved with the Treatment Action Campaign. So we want to treat equal numbers of activists and people in communities.
Translation: Uthi emva kokuba bebona abantu babo besweleka bephala ngugawulayo baqonde ukuba mabaqale ngeendlela zokunqanda ukwanda kokusweleka koluntu nalapho bathi bazakubonelela abo bafuna amachiza okuthomalalisa lentsholongwane kagawulayo.
EDUARD: It became apparent quiet sometime ago that the Treatment Action Campaign was losing a large numbers of its leaders and members to AIDS related illnesses and while the primarily focus was to campaign for access to anti retroviral therapy in the public sector we felt that we must also do something to make treatment available to those people need it and some funds were raised for that purpose and that is how the project.
Translation: Uthi ubukho balenkqubo youkuncedana nabaphila nogawulayo ixhomekeke kwinceba yabantu abanikela nge mali kwingxowa ebekelwe bucala ukuncedan nokuthengwas kwamachiza okulwa ugawulayo nenkqubo youkuyba koogqirha kwabo abazakufumana lamachiza. Kungoko ememelela kuluntu ukuba lubinze kwingxowa youkubonelelwa kwabo baphila nentsholongwane kagawulayo khonukuze bafumane amichiza. Uthi ngenyanga kuxabisa malunga namakhlu amahlanu ukuya kumakhulu asibhozo ukuthenga amachiza kagawulayo.
EDUARD: We’ve received donations from individuals, larger donations from one or two organizations for this purpose, but our final fundraising drive we will be launching very soon will be to ask individuals across the board in South Africa to make a small contribution on a regular basis to the TAC Treatment Project. And to that purpose we are asking everyone who is working and earning an income to make a regular donation of R50 per month. It costs us between R500 and R800 a month to treat a patient if we can get about 10 people to make a contribution R50 a month that is in most cases enough to treat an individual. We also be exploring other avenues of fundraising but that’s our primary fundraising drive.
TRANSLATION: Uhambisa athi undoqo kukuba bafumane inxaso eyaneleyo khonukuze kulonyaka uzayo babe sele bencede malunga newaka labantu abazakuxhamla ekufumaneni amachiza athomalalisa intsholongwane kagawulayo kumnyaka ka 2004.
EDUARD: I think the most important thing for us is to raise sufficient funds to place a large number of people on treatment. We have enough funds at the moment to place 50 people on treatment by the end of the year, but in order to ensure sustainability of the project and in order to reach our target of a thousand people on treatment by the end of 2004 we will need to raise significant funds and for that we have to appeal to the public to support us. We’ve always said that the real hard work start when government policy changes and the provision of antiretrovirals becomes a matter of implementation, so for the TAC as a whole assisting government and supporting governments implementation is a major focus and the TAC Treatment Project as a project that will be helping government in a sense of aleviating some of the burden in the public health sector it’s just an extension of that broader focus.
E-mail Thandeka Teyise