HIV/AIDS vulnerability among farm workers in the southern Freestate

Heideman, Estelle (2010-03)

Thesis (MPhil (Industrial Psychology. Africa Centre for HIV/AIDS Management))--University of Stellenbosch, 2010.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The farming industry in South Africa is experiencing serious economic threats due to the death rate among farm workers caused by HIV/AIDS related illnesses. I analyzed an educational intervention, focusing on HIV/AIDS prevention and understanding, involving 8 farms and 90 workers. Interactive and didactic methods included self-reflection, storytelling and group work. Data were collected through questionnaires and interviews. The workers learned the importance of knowing their HIV status. Their knowledge about HIV/AIDS increased and they developed skills to better manage their health. They became more positive towards people living with AIDS, about condom use, and status disclosure. Farmers in the Southern Free State and specifically those in and around Springfontein have been trying for years to engage into some kind of discussions in order to assist their employees to better deal with the impact of HIV/AIDS on their respective families. In the past mobile clinics visited the farms for Primary Health Care including HIV related services, but as relationships with Government deteriorated over the years, services also terminated. As a result, farm workers in this area became a neglected and forgotten group as far as AIDS awareness programmes are concerned. The low literacy levels of most of the workers disadvantaged them further as most of the material printed for awareness passed them by. With this study the possibility is investigated that a specifically designed HIV/AIDS awareness programme will impact on the knowledge, attitudes and behaviour of farm workers in the Springfontein region. The programme will be evaluated continuously in order to improve methodology and content of the programme. The ultimate aim would then be to design an HIV/AIDS awareness programme that will assist farmers and farm workers to better deal with the impact of HIV/AIDS.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die plaasnywerheid in Suid-Afrika ondervind ernstige ekonomiese dreigemente as gevolg van die sterftesyfer onder plaaswerkers, wat veroorsaak word deur MIV/VIGS verwante siektes. Ek het ’n opvoedkundige intervensie, met die fokus op MIV/VIGS voorkoming en begrip wat 8 plase en 90 werkers betrek, ontleed. Interaktiewe en didaktiewe metodes het in selfbesinning, storievertelling en groepwerk ingesluit. Data is gekollekteer deur middel van vraelyste en onderhoude. Die werkers het geleer dat dit belangrik is om te weet wat jou MIV/VIGS status is. Hul kennis van MIV/VIGS het toegeneem en hulle het vaardighede ontwikkel om hul gesondheid beter te beheer. Hulle het meer positief geword teenoor mense wie met VIGS saamleef, oor die gebruik van kondome en die bekendmaking van ’n persoon se status. Boere in die Suidelike Vrystaat, en spesifiek diegene in en rondom Springfontein, probeer al jare om aan een of ander bespreking deel te neem om werknemers te help om die impak wat VIGS op hul onderskie families het, te hanteer. In die verlede het mobiele klinieke die plase besoek vir Primêre Gesondheidsorg, insluitende MIV verwante dienste, maar soos verhoudings met die Regering agteruitgegaan het, is dienste ook beëindig. As gevolg daarvan, het plaaswerkers in hierdie gebied ’n verwaarloosde en vergete groep geword sover dit VIGS- bewustheidsprogramme betref. Die lae geletterheidsvlakke van die meeste van die werkers het hulle verder benadeel omdat die meeste gedrukte material vir bewustheid, hul verbygegaan het. Met hierdie studie is die moontlikheid ondersoek dat ’n spesifiek ontwerpte MIV/Vigs program impak sal maak op die kennis, houding en gedrag van die plaaswerkers van die Springfontein-streek. Die programme sal voortdurend geëvalueer word sodat die metodologie en inhoud van die programme verbeter kan word. Die uiteindelike doel sal dan wees om ’n MIV/VIGS- bewustheidsprogram te ontwerp wat boere en plaaswerkers sal help om beter aandag te kan gee aan die impak van MIV/VIGS.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/4232
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