A technical report on the development, implementation and evaluation of an HIV/AIDS workplace policy and program on a farm in Mpumalanga : a South African case study

Doyer, Ida (2005-12)

Assignment (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2005.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The population of rural agricultural South Africa is particularly vulnerable to HIV/AIDS due to the culmination of a variety of factors. Open discussions around sexuality, sex and sexually transmitted diseases are often limited in the more conservative rural areas resulting in limited knowledge on a disease such as HIV/AIDS. Lower levels of formal education impacts on understanding of physiological concepts such as “transmission”, “immune system”, “virus” etc. Income rate per annum is lower compared to urban dwellings resulting in limited financial resources as well as isolation from the tentacles of mass-media prevention and education messages on HIV/AIDS. Primary health care services in rural areas are often understaffed with limited resources, and unavailability of certain medication such as anti-retroviral drugs prevails. The combination of all the above-mentioned aspects leads to increased vulnerability to contracting HIV/AIDS. Agricultural South Africa can and should contribute to economic growth and rural upliftment. The black landowners of South Africa is a valuable population regarding this idealism and should be empowered, educated and cared for. The HIV/AIDS disease poses a serious threat to the agricultural sector as well as the population of black landowners in rural South Africa. Action should be taken to accelerate HIV/AIDS interventions in rural areas, and private initiatives are desperately needed. If every farmer/landowner in rural South Africa were to enrol and finance an HIV/AIDS intervention program, the rural population of South Africa could be reached, educated and cared for sooner rather than later. The objective of this research project was to record the process of development, implementation and evaluation of such an HIV/AIDS intervention on a farm. A homogenous population presented itself in the form of twelve full time employees and landowners on a farm in the Albert Luthuli district of Mpumalanga. An HIV/AIDS workplace policy and program were developed and implemented on the mentioned farm, and the effectiveness thereof was evaluated through post-intervention interviews. A control group consisting of eight farm workers employed on another farm in the district was identified and the same questions were directed at them in personal face-to-face interviews. The farm owner was interviewed to establish whether he perceived the implemented policy and program as valuable and profitable to the farm as a business. A qualitative case study design was thus utilised to obtain the results in this particular study. The research results supported all four stated hypotheses and both the farm owner and employees perceived the implemented policy and program as positive, valuable and helpful. Valuable insight and knowledge were gained and recommendations to streamline an HIV/AIDS intervention on a farm are included in this technical report. Scientific research projects are crucial in the development of home-hitting and successful HIV/AIDS interventions, especially in rural South Africa. If the results of a variety of interventions on farms were to be recorded and compared, valuable insight would be gained streamlining interventions on farms and minimising the detrimental effects of HIV/AIDS on rural areas of agricultural South Africa.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: As gevolg van die sameloop van ‘n aatal spesifieke faktore is die plattelandse landboubevolking van Suid-Afrika besonder vatbaar vir die MIV/VIGS sindroom. Geslagtelikheid, seks en seksueel oordagbare siektes word nie openlik bespreek nie, met die gevolg dat kennis oor hierdie sake baie beperk is. Min skoolopleiding lei daartoe dat begrippe soos “oordraagbaarheid”, “immuunsisteem”, “virus” nie geredelik verstaan word nie. Lae gesinsinkomstes, min blootstelling aan die media wat boodskappe dra oor voorkoming en behandeling en die onbeskikbaarheid van anti-retrovirale middels is algemeen. Die gevolg is verhoogde vatbaarheid vir die MIV/VIGS sindroom. Die landbousektor kan en moet sy deel doen aan ekomomiese groei en opheffing van Suid-Afika. Swart grondeienaars is ‘n kosbare bevolking en behoort opgelei, opgevoed en bemagtig te word. MIV/VIGS verteenwoordig ‘n ernstige bedreiging vir die lanboubevolking in plattelandse Suid-Afrika. Daadwerklike optrede is noodsaaklik en die inisiatief van die privaatsektor is onontbeerlik. As elke boer in Suid-Afika betokke sal raak en ‘n program begin finansier, dan sal hierdie probeem hokgeslaan kan word. Die doel van hierdie navorsingprojek was om die proses van die ontwikkeling, implementering en evaluering van ‘n MIV/VIGS intervensie op ‘n plaas te beskryf. ‘n Plaas in die Albert Luthuli munisipaliteit in Mpumalanga is gekies. ‘n Eenvormige bevolking van twaalf voltydse plaaswerkers en die plaaseieneaar is gebruik. ‘n Vigsbestuursprogram is ontwikkel en in plek gestel en by wyse van individuele onderhoude geëvalueer. ‘n Kontrole groep van agt plaaswerkers op ‘n naburige plaas is ook betrek en dieselfde vrae is aan hulle gevra. Ook die plaaseienaar het ‘n evaluasie onderhoud gehad. Dit was dus ‘n voorbeeld van ‘n kwalitatiewe studie. Die uitkoms van die studie dui daarop dat al vier die werkshipoteses ondersteun is en dat sowel die plaaseienaar as die werknemers die beleid en die program positief en waardevol bevind het. Waardevolle insigte en kennis is opgedoen en aanbevelings oor die ontwerp en implementering van ‘n MIV/VIGS bestuursprogram op ‘n plaas word aangebied in hierdie verslag. Wetenskaplike studie is belangrik vir die ontwikkeling van ‘n sisteem om MIV/VIGS suksesvol te hanteer, veral in plattelandse Suid-Afrika. As soortgelyke programme kon ingestel en dan opgevolg word op ‘n wetenskaplike basis, dan sou die gevolge van die MIV/VIGS sindroom in die platteland baie hanteerbaarder kon wees.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/17244
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