Treatment Advocacy and Literacy

Category 1

TALC is an active and effective advocacy and treatment literacy organization that has made major achievements in Zambia and has gained credibility and status with government authorities and other international HIV and AIDS advocacy groups. TALC and partners advocate for equitable access to comprehensive and complete continuum of treatment, care and support for people living with HIV and AIDS and the affected. Main program areas include: Policy Advocacy, Capacity Building, Resource Mobilization, Community mobilization, Networking, Communication and Information, Monitoring and Evaluation of media reporting, Action Research. The Campaign also discusses prevention and promotes wider and more equitable access to treatment and prevention services, working primarily on global and national levels.

Goal of the Practice
  • Campaign for free HIV/AIDS treatment and care for people living with HIV and AIDS; Campaign and support the prevention of all new HIV infection; Campaign for an effective regional and global network comprised of organizations with similar aims and objectives.
  • Promote and sponsor legislation to ensure equal access and equal treatment for all people with HIV/AIDS.
  • Challenge by means of litigation, lobbying, advocacy and all forms of legitimate social mobilization, any type of discrimination relating to treatment of HIV/AIDS in the private and public sector.
  • Educate, train, promote and develop an understanding and commitment, within all communities, of developments in HIV/AIDS treatment and care.
  • Train and develop a representative and effective leadership of people living with HIV/AIDS on the basis of equality and non-discrimination irrespective of race, gender, sexual orientation, disability, religion, sex.
Core Components
  • Media releases, press conferences, radio and TV talk shows; publication of the book "My Mum has HIV"
  • Lobbying: for example, TALC successfully lobbied the Ministry of Health to ban the promotion and use of the unapproved and not scientifically tested medication TETRASIL in Zambia; TALC recommendations were included in the Addis Ababa declaration; provided input into the report 'Missing the Target,' aimed at influencing policy at national and global level on ART; successful lobbying for the opening of a new ART centre in Chazanga compound; presenting petitions to Government and attending policy and decision making forums to ensure meaningful involvement of PLWHAs & those affected
  • Public events/shows were organised during Worlds AIDS day, International Volunteers Day, National Agricultural Show, and the Week of Global Action on keeping the promise; holding public marches and peaceful demonstrations
  • Networking, collaborative efforts and internet connections with stakeholders at national, regional & international level (UNITAID partnership)
Noteworthy Results
  • In 2007 alone, the organization produced very good tangible results including publication of a book "My Mum has HIV" which was chosen as a best practice publication by PEPFAR. TALC feels that its networking capacity continues to improve, as three Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) were signed in 2007.
Lessons Learned
  • Because advocacy is sometimes perceived as anti-government, it is key to work with government and partners trusted by government and form relationships.
  • High illiteracy levels especially in rural areas makes work difficult; success of the program depends on how accessible materials and messages are to all levels of literacy in populations.
  • Including members in meetings, policy decisions, and enabling them to vote on initiatives regularly helps promote buy-in and member ownership of initiatives.
Focus Areas
Implemented By
Treatment Advocacy and Literacy Campaign (TALC)
Participating Organization
  • International HIV/AIDS Alliance (the Alliance)
  • Forum Syd
  • and 133 member organizations
Target Population
People Living with HIV (PLWH)
Implementation Years
01/2004 - ongoing