Today we’re celebrating being part of the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s African effort towards reducing and eventually eliminating HIV. CDC, through a range of Southern and East African programmes, are nearing a milestone of 10 million Voluntary Medical Male Circumcisions, a procedure proven to reduce the risk of female-to-male transmission of HIV by up to 60% and provide partial lifetime protection for men. The foreskin can harbour disease, and is also prone to small cuts and tears which play a part in disease transmission. Having a safe medical circumcision is a crucial part of the HIV response and also can protect against other Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs). Many African men already undergo circumcision traditionally, which carries a higher risk of infections and complications, and so our programmes seek to provide this procedure in a medical setting.
In Kenya, alongside our partners JSI and MYSA and funded by PEPFAR under the Dreams Innovation Challenge, we played our part by providing over 1,000 VMMCs and after-care packages using our unique football methodology. Players followed ten week blocks of football sessions where they learnt about the benefits of VMMC on the football pitch. We also invited parents along to the sessions so they could understand too, and then for anyone wanting the procedure, we provided VMMC free of charge after football tournaments through qualified Ministry of Health practitioners.
We’re proud to be part of the ongoing fight against HIV. To find out more about our work, check out https://tackleafrica.org/get-involved/