Mission & Vision

Introduction to HEAIDS' mission from Director Dr Ramneek Ahluwalia:

"The key focus of the HEAIDS Programme is to ensure that youth and young people passing through our sector within all our 400 campuses countrywide, are healthy and competent to take their rightful place in contributing to the economic growth of our country. The HEAIDS Programme components has assisted in increasing life expectancy both in terms of economic and healthy living for hundreds and thousands of poor and vulnerable young people in this country, who are now accessing proper care and support in terms of treatment, psychological and social well being, with the support of HEAIDS' partners. It has been proven through medical science that early detection and treatment can now prolong life expectancy by more than 30 years of healthy living for people infected with HIV or any other health aliment. This eventually provides a return on investment of our contribution in increasing life expectancy of our young people that eventually contribute towards the economy of their own families, our sector and nation in total. The HEAIDS programme  has extended its services of Life style diseases, cancer screening, family planning, Contraception, Health promotion within our award winning First Thing First Programme; Men health through HEAIDS Brother's for life, Women Health: HEAIDS Zazi, LGBTI Population: HEAIDS LGBTI programme, Alcohol and Drugs: HEAIDS Balance Your life, Campus Radio: HEAIDS Future Beats & Capacity Next Generation Labour Development: HEAIDS Curriculum Project. This makes HEAIDS comprehensive and unique."

HEAIDS Mission & Vision

The Higher Education and Training HIV/AIDS Programme (HEAIDS) is a national facility to develop and support the HIV mitigation programmes at South Africa's public Higher Education Institutions (HEIs), and progressively Further Education & Training Colleges (FETs).   

HEAIDS  is an initiative of the Department of Higher Education and Training that is undertaken by Higher Education South Africa (HESA), the representative body of South Africa's 23 public Higher Education Institutions. 

HEAIDS supports higher education institutions in responding to the pandemic through their core functions of learning and teaching, research and innovation, and community engagement. 

The programme is rooted in a concept of the responsibility of HEIs to address the HIV/AIDS pandemic on a human rights basis on at least five fronts:

  1. Developing HIV prevention programmes for students and staff and facilities for the treatment, care and support of students and staff living with HIV.
  2. Providing a comprehensive workplace HIV/AIDS programme that caters to the needs of staff.
  3. Educating and equipping students to make a contribution to the national HIV/AIDS response in their future career fields.
  4. Conducting research that will strengthen society's ability to resist and ultimately      overcome the pandemic.
  5. Providing HIV/AIDS services to related communities through outreach projects and practical training programmes.

 As part of an increasingly comprehensive HIV/AIDS mitigation programme in the higher education and training sector, HEAIDS implements the following programmes and projects in partnership with a range of public and private role players :

  1. First Things First (HIV/STI/TB) campaign , which contributes to an objective of the  National Strategic Plan to maximise opportunities for testing for HIV. The campaign provides for the testing of large numbers using HIV rapid finger prick tests, and is supported by an appropriate pre-test and post-test counselling and education programme.
  2. Brothers for Life/Masculinity (campaign tackling the issues of Male sexual health sexuality, HIV prevention, Medical Male Circumcision, Rape and gender based violence) at institutional facilities or off campus by trained health professionals, with pre-counselling and proper follow up care. MMC is promoted as part of a healthy sex life that includes being faithful to a single partner, avoiding alcohol abuse, and wearing condoms.
  3. Curriculum development and integration, to capacitate academic staff across disciplines to appropriately integrate and address HIV/AIDS in curricula.
  4. MSM and LGBTI programme to promote an enabling environment and access to appropriate HIV treatment, care and prevention services for Men who have Sex with Men (MSM) and Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersexed (LGBTI) persons.
  5. ZAZI, an advocacy, mass media and mobilisation campaign that addresses gender inequalities by encouraging young women to draw on their inner strength, power, and self-confidence to know themselves and what they stand for to guide their life decisions. 
  6. Balance Your Life, a primary prevention response to substance abuse as an HIV risk factor. It involves risk screening and brief interventions including via internet, health clinics, trained professionals and lay counsellors. 
  7. Future Beats Campus Radio Pilot project, aimed at developing programming around HIV and Aids and related topics like gender violence, substance abuse, human rights and social justice.
  8. Monitoring and Evaluation, through a sector wide framework designed to measure progress against the objectives of the Policy and Strategic Framework on HIV and AIDS for Higher Education, which was launched on 29 November 2012. It provides for 23 routine indicators and 10 periodic indicators.