2019 Advocacy-for-Cure Academy
Talkmore Taurai Mazorodze
Institution: Positive Women Together in Action
Country of work: Zimbabwe
What is your motivation for becoming an HIV cure advocate?
It has always been my ambition to be among the people who will make very important change in the lives of people living with HIV (PLHIV) through dedicating my time to HIV response. As an advocate I have always wanted the communities of PLHIV to be involved in researches to find a cure for HIV so I believe attending this academy will afford me the opportunity to gain new updates on HIV cure research and put me in a better position to respond to issues on HIV cure raised within the communities where we are involved in.
What advocacy work are you currently engaged in?
Currently I have been involved in the advocacy campaign for the procurement and roll out of the new HIV drug (DTG) in the country where as an organization we have been going around the country sensitizing and building the capacity of communities of PLHIV on the new drug so that they can be in a better position to demand to be switched to the new drug. I believe this initiative was very important in a way of ensuring an informed community of PLHIV on the new drugs as well as capacitating them on their right to treatment. This campaign yielded good results because DTG was rolled out late last year in the country and some of the community members we engaged are already on the new drug.
How do you think knowledge learned from the Advocacy-for-Cure Academy will influence your current work?
The knowledge and tools gained will be used to better communicate and disseminate HIV cure research results accurately to the communities of PLHIV where we work as an organization because currently it is difficult to communicate this information to our communities. I believe the tools and knowledge will also motivate me more to engage with other advocates in the country working on HIV cure or treatment and create a pool of more informed and resilient advocates who can be in a position to engage government, policy makers and other stakeholders in the field of HIV treatment advocacy.