|PARTNER: Society for Women and AIDS in Africa - Cameroun (SWAAC)|
The Society for Women and AIDS in Africa-Cameroun (SWAAC) is
Pan-African, non-governmental, non-sectarian, and non-profit
organization based in Cameroun. SWAAC is a women’s organization working
in collaboration with men to promote African women’s health by
identifying causes and effects of HIV and AIDS.
Therefore SWAAC is promoting access to affordable and relevant services and programs aimed at reducing the exposure of women to HIV.
Helene, SWAAC Jeune Depuis 2007: "When I joined the group training of peer educators on adolescent sexuality in 2007, I was ignorant about HIV. I didn’t even know it existed. Over the course of the training I received information about all the different methods for the prevention of HIV transmission. As a young woman, today I know to not always just trust someone who tells me he is faithful, but to be prudent because HIV isn’t written on people’s faces. I discuss sexuality with my peers and always tell them that before any sexual act that must require that their partner use a condom. It’s also at SWAAC that I saw and touched a female condom for the first time. Today I go out with other peer educators to promote information in the community about HIV prevention. I am sure of myself because SWAAC taught me not only to work on my self-esteem, but also how to communicate better with my friends. I know my rights and my limits, and I am proud of whom I’ve become: a well-balanced young woman who is comfortable in her own skin. "
Joy, SWAAC Volunteer: "I didn’t know about the female condom until I joined SWAA CAMEROON as a volunteer. SWAAC taught me that as a woman, I have the right to negotiate for safer sex with the use of the female condom in order to protect myself from any STIs. The knowledge of the usage of the female condom and the transmission of this knowledge to different women has really gone a long way to rescue some sexually abused women by their drunken husbands/partners since it can be inserted for a period of eight hours before sexual intercourse with the woman running no risk. With SWAA Cameroon, I learnt communication for the change of behavior, moral support to infected persons and I am now sharing my knowledge with others in order to reduce the rate of new infections. So, I now give my time in educating other women on the importance of prevention of HIV infection and reinfection for those already living with the virus. I feel helpful to my community and my greatest wish is to see that those already infected live positively while those not infected remain uninfected."
Click here to read an article in Exchange Magazine by IWHC Program Assistant Chelsea Ricker highlighting SWAAC's work in Cameroun.