Being a young person in South Africa can’t always be easy. Growing up is a journey often burdened with the effects of a seemingly unrelenting HIV/TB epidemic and educational systems are still recovering from previous inequalities. Not to mention issues of poverty and unemployment. Nonetheless, at OVSA, we are proud when we see how brave and inspiring young South Africans are. They bring boundless energy, passion and fresh ideas to the table, and their commitment to advocating for change is critical to building a healthy tomorrow.
Clearly, young people make up a significant part of our total population and unlike the past, where integration of youth in strategic planning and policy development was sorely lacking, they are in fact, one of our most valued assets. By providing them with the platform to share their experiences and address their concerns, young people can and will initiate change. Many already initiate positive changes in their communities, thereby investing in the next generation, who will be skilled and able to support sustainable change over time.
I Want To Be
As part of our #HappyInSchool project, learners created dramatised images using improvised props to depict their future dreams and aspirations.
OneVoice South Africa (OVSA): Success Stories
World Aids Day 2015
Stigma is one of the main reasons why young people living with HIV are not getting clinical help early, and sadly,managing HIV when ones’ CD4 count is already below 300 (at first HIV test), is problematic. It is also evident, that many young women are getting pregnant and acquiring HIV, which suggests that condom health messages may not be having sufficient impact, and/or condom usage is not that popular among young people. Evidence however has shown us, that if HIV is well managed, a person can live a healthy and long life – and based on this, OneVoice South Africa (OVSA) in partnership with Metropolitan, hosted three WORLD AIDS DAY in December 2015; to educate young people about the importance of supporting people living with HIV. Three implementing communities, Inanda Comprehensive High School/Bhambayi Settlement, Waterloo High School in Verulam and Umlazi Commercial High School in Umlazi supported the events, with many pledging to uphold 2015’s theme “Zero Stigma…Zero Discrimination!”.
OneVoice South Africa (OVSA) is a South African non-governmental organisation that recognises the crucial role young people can play in managing their health, developing their full potential and strengthening our communities. Our Schools Programme has been developed by development specialists, schools and learners, as well as OVSA staff. It has also been endorsed by the KZN Department of Education and is in support of the Curriculum Assessment Policy (CAPS) document, and the national response in addressing HIV and TB, Life Skills, Enterprise Development, Gender, Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, Water Access, Sanitation & Hygiene (WASH) and Human Rights issues.
Our Vision, is to support a safe and creative environment where young people are part of the collective voice to develop positive life skills in response to critical health and lifestyle issues.
Our Mission is to promote meaningful participation of young people in making informed decisions about health and lifestyle, including sexual and reproductive health and rights, hygiene practices and good citizenship within our communities; as well as expand target audience knowledge on TB and TB/HIV Co-Infection, and promote early detection.
Any donation you are able to make, makes a tremendous difference to our ability to continue supporting young people on addressing the many critical health and lifestyle hurdles they have to overcome on a daily basis. Your support ensures that we focus on implementing an ever better OVSA Schools Programme that supports young boys and girls as they prepare for life; for its responsibilities and possibilities, equipping them to solve problems, make informed decisions and take appropriate actions to live meaningful lives in an ever-changing society.