PMB girl guide on HIV/Aids mission to India

2011-11-24 00:00

LEADING by setting a good example is what inspires a Panorama Primary School grade five teacher, who cannot contain her excitement at being chosen to represent South Africa in a World Girl Guide Association (WAGGS) seminar in India.

Phindile Buthelezi leaves for India today and will spend a week at the Sangam Guiding World home in Maharashtra.

She will attend a seminar on the topic “We can stop the spread of HIV/Aids, malaria and other diseases”.

“Growing up I always wanted to be a girl scout, but I never had the opportunity to do it because we did not have such a thing in our schools. That is why I decided to be part of the Girl Guides Association: young girls need role models and guidance and it’s fun.

“As teachers we are always looking for new ways to prevent our girls from contracting diseases and encountering other challenges in their lives,” said Buthelezi.

With 10 million girl guides and girl scouts from 145 countries across the world, WAGGS is the largest voluntary movement in the world dedicated to girls and young women.

Buthelezi has been a member of the association since 2009 and leads a group of 32 brownies and 20 girl guides.

Since this will be her first time in India, Buthelezi is excited about the trip. It will give her a chance to share with guides from other countries her research on what South Africa is doing to combat HIV and Aids.

“I was only given a month to do my research because of my teacher duties, but I gave it my best. I visited local clinics, the Health Department , Lifeline and Love Life to collect information. My presentation is about how HIV and Aids have a woman’s face and what we as women can do to protect ourselves from the disease.

“It is about poverty, cultural norms, communication, rights and making girls or the youth understand and know that their future is in their hands,” said Buthelezi.

thandiwe.jumo@witness.co.za

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