Our Youth, Our Future - Case Study

Youth friendly services in uThukela

Following over 10 years of providing mentoring and teaching to healthcare workers managing children with HIV, CHIVA Africa has developed a comprehensive mentoring model to support clinics to become adolescent and youth friendly.
‘Our Youth, Our Future’ was piloted across seven clinics in the uThukela District of KwaZulu Natal in 2013/14 in partnership with the Youth and Gender Directorate at the Provincial Department of Health (DoH). The aim of the programme was to develop the core competencies and confidence of healthcare workers to deliver quality healthcare – both prevention and treatment – to young people in their communities.

Haviland Clinic was identified by the DoH as one of the clinics where the programme would be piloted. During the ten month pilot, our team worked with Mr. Mabaso (Operations Manager) and his team to introduce youth friendly services.

Haviland Clinic is situated in the Weenen Umtshezi Sub-district of KwaZulu Natal. Although it is supposed to be a 24h hour clinic, the night service was suspended a year ago due to a shortage of professional nurses. The clinic sees between 2500 – 3000 patients monthly.
“The way the support was structured, giving a step-by-step briefing to me as a leader of the clinic team and mentoring some members of the staff made it easy to implement Adolescent and Youth Friendly Services (AYFS) successfully without anyone having undergone formal training in the clinic.
CHIVA SA has put our clinic on the map. We have even been awarded a certificate of recognition for launching and maintaining AYFS.” Mr. Mabaso.

There are number of important improvements that CHIVA Africa helped implement which have been highlighted by Mr. Mabaso as having been hugely successful:

  • The clinic is now integrated and linked with other youth groups in schools, NGO’s and communities at large, which was not the case before CHIVA SA introduced the possibility.
  • Many more young people are visiting the clinic because staff are better equipped on how to approach and talk to them.
  • Children coming directly from school are treated first and are therefore able to go back to school immediately. Those who need appointments are booked for the weekend.

“The launch (of the CHIVA SA Adolescent programme) and support thereafter are proof of a job well done. I personally benefitted a lot when I was given guidance and input on my dream project of campaigning to bring both older and young to health facilities. One does not always need formal training but best mentoring and positive attitude at Haviland Clinic is a proof of CHIVA SA achievement where there was no hope.” Mr Mabaso.

With the pilot now complete, we have the support of the district health team to extend the programme into further districts of KwaZulu Natal. We have already initiated a new programme in uMzinyathi and further districts will be prioritised with the Department of Health once funding is secured.