HIV Resources for a Faith Response

This section contains a growing selection of resources that could be useful for a faith response to HIV. Please also share your resources with me!

 

World Council of Churches

Two initiatives of the World Council of Churches health and healing programme focus specifically on HIV and AIDS. Many wonderful and helpful documents have been developed by these two initiatives over the years. You can read more and access resources:

Treatment Adherence and Faith Healing in the Context of HIV and AIDS in Africa.

Treatment Adherence and Faith Healing in the Context of HIV and AIDS in Africa: Training Manual for Religious Leaders was produced by the WCC in collaboration with PEPFAR-UNAIDS Faith Initiative. Speaking at the launch ceremony, Canon Gideon Byamugisha challenged people of faith to recognize that science and faith are complementary. “Take your medication like there is no God,” he counselled, “and pray like there is no medication.” Download the cover and the manual.

CCIH Resources

Community-Based Prevention and Care Working Group Issues Paper. 

Christian approaches to community-based prevention and care are distinct and differ from other approaches in several critical ways. This 2019 CCIH issue paper highlights some of these points.

Download here

One Body

One Body started as a cooperation between national Church Councils in the Nordic European countries and Southern Africa. Together we have created material on HIV and AIDS(2006) and towards gender equality, including young people and overcoming violence (2014). The Fellowship of Christian Councils in southern Africa further developed the supplement (2016) as a response to the need for training. It is a continuation of the One Body Series, and discusses the same topics such as Human Dignity, Gender-Based Violence and Unity of Humanity as One Body and uses the method of dialogue.

You can access the resources from the website. in a number of languages.

Roman Catholic Church

Themes for World Day of the Sick

February 11 is World Day of the Sick, an observation started by Pope John Paul II as a way for believers to offer prayers for those suffering from illnesses. The day coincides with the commemoration of Our Lady of Lourdes and seeks to be "a special time of prayer and sharing, of offering one's suffering for the good of the Church and of reminding everyone to see in his sick brother or sister the face of Christ who, by suffering, dying and rising, achieved the salvation of mankind" (Letter Instituting the World Day of the Sick, 13 May 1992, n. 3).

The Apostolic Nunciature (Embassy of the Holy See) shared the selected verses with a short introduction for the observation from 2020 - 2021

  • 2020 - Mt 11:28
  • 2021 - Mt 23:8
  • 2022 - Lk 6:36

Download the document here.

Gender-based Violence

Thursdays in Black

Gender based violence is a universal and global issue that harms men, women and children in their most private spheres. We often feel helpless and hopeless in the face of so much pain and injustice. However, we can all be involved in a simple but powerful campaign to address gender violence. Every Thursday, people around the world wear black as a symbol of strength and courage, representing our solidarity with victims and survivors of violence, and calling for a world without rape and violence.
 
Thursdays in Black encourages everyone, men and women, to wear black every Thursday. This can be a campaign T-shirt, other black clothing or simply a campaign badge as a sign of their support. Wearing black on Thursdays shows others that you are tired of putting up with violence, and calls for communities where we can all walk safely without fear; fear of being beaten up, fear of being verbally abused, fear of being raped, fear of discrimination. The campaign is not confined only to countries at war, but recognises that violence takes many forms, including domestic violence, sexual assault, rape, incest, murder, female infanticide, genital mutilation, sexual harassment, discrimination and sex trafficking.
 
Thursdays in Black focuses on ways that individuals can challenge attitudes that cause rape and violence, on a personal and public level. It provides an opportunity for people to become part of a worldwide movement which enables the despair, pain and anger about rape and other forms of violence to be transformed into political action.
 
In South Africa, We Will Speak Out South Africa, together with many other individuals, churches, and organisations, strongly support and promote this campaign. As part of this support they make available a website with a very comprehensive database of materials related to sexual and gender-based violence. There is a specific section that focuses specifically on faith-based materials, including sermons, guidelines, Bible studies, etc.

Report on Interfaith Theological Reflections for a Faith-Based Response to Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in Southern Africa,

This report of an event held 15-17 July 2019 in Johannesburg, South Africa, provides interesting questions for reflection on the challenges of gender and gender-based violence from a faith perspective.

The meeting was convened with the following objectives in mind:

  • To create a space for reflection and analysis by faith leaders on the topic of SRHR based on their specific faiths and sacred texts

  • To gain faith organizations’ support for sexual and reproductive health and rights as well as sexuality education policies and laws in the SADC region, by explaining the policy framework from a theological perspective.

  • To strengthen advocacy skills of the faith-Leaders to contribute to SRHR influence at national and regional levels

This report will highlight the background or motivation that led to the convening of this meeting, a brief review of where participants were drawn from, the methodology and main discussions. This report is part of a two-part workshop process which will result in production and validation of three policy briefs on:

  • Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights

  • Teenage pregnancy

  • Sexual and Gender-based Violence

Download PDF

Created in God's Image - A gender transformation toolkit for women and men in churches. Sept 2014

Developed by PACSA, NCA and ACTAlliance
This is a revised edition of the booklet “Created in God’s Image: A tool for women and men in churches” produced in 2008. The structure of the tool has been changed to take the form of a toolkit.
 

Pastoral Letter on Violence Against Women, Girls and Children

Issued by the South African Catholica Bishops Conference during Advent 2019

Download the Letter here

 

The World Council of Churches - Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance: Children, Adolescents and HIV

The WCC-EAA has been actively advocating for HIV treatment for children since 2006, raising awareness on the urgent need for HIV child-friendly and age appropriate medicines and by mobilising faith-based advocacy on paediatric AIDS.

The WCC-EAA developed the booklet: Faith Communities Taking Action with Children and youth living with HIV (pdf, 6.6 MB) providing guidelines for including a children's letterwriting campaign in advocacy.

WCC-EAA also shares many other resources for advocacy on children and HIV on their website.

Christian Sermon Guide Children And HIV For Religious Leaders

Developed by the AIDSFree Project, this sermon guide was developed to empower religious leaders with a tool and skills to reach their congregational members with key messages on paediatric HIV transmission and prevention; stigma and discrimination; and treatment, care, and support:, as well as male involvement in the whole HIV prevention and response continuum. 

The Christian sermon guide was developed in collaboration with religious leaders at the grassroots level and theologians in Nairobi, Kenya, taking cognisance of grassroots realities. Hence it is written to reflect the original tone and language used by the clergy and theologians who developed the sermon messages. This authenticity is preserved to ensure that the guide is adaptable to its primary audience, i.e., religious leaders in Nairobi, Kenya. However, the messages can be adapted to suit different country contexts. Biblical quotations in the guide are taken from the New International Version.

Download

Islamic Khutbah Guide Children And HIV For Religious Leaders

This sermon guide was developed to empower religious leaders with a tool and skills to reach their congregational members with key messages on paediatric HIV transmission and prevention; stigma and discrimination; and treatment, care, and support, as well as male involvement in the whole HIV prevention and response continuum. The Khutbah sermon guide was developed in collaboration with religious leaders at the grassroots level and theologians in Nairobi, Kenya, taking cognisance of grassroots realities. Hence it is written to reflect the original tone and language used by the clergy and theologians who developed the sermon messages. This authenticity is preserved to ensure that the guide is adaptable to its primary audience, i.e., religious leaders in Nairobi, Kenya. However, the messages can be adapted to suit different country contexts.

Download

School Health Toolkit 

KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) in South Africa has the highest HIV prevalence for any province at 27% [ref: 2018 HSRC HIV Impact Study], and also records the highest number of new TB cases annually. In April 2011, Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in partnership with the KZN Department of Health (DOH) started a HIV/TB project called “Bending the Curves” in King Cetshwayo District (pop. 114 000), aiming to reduce the incidence of HIV and TB, bring down HIV and TB morbidity and mortality, and to help the DoH achieve the UNAIDS 90-90-90 by 2020 targets.

The results of two major studies conducted by MSF made it clear that the HIV epidemic would not be overcome without a strong focus on youth, and with HIV Counselling and Testing (HCT) being the most important entry point for HIV-related prevention, support, care and treatment, MSF embarked on a School Testing Program in 2012 in collaboration with local government, with the aim of reducing new HIV and TB infections while empowering high school learners through education to make informed decisions when it comes to sexual and reproductive health. In time, additional services were offered, and the initiative was renamed the MSF School Health Program.
South Africa's 1996 Constitution and Bill of Rights protects the right to make decisions regarding reproduction and the right to access healthcare services for both adults and children. Laws such as the National Health Act (2003), the Children's Act (2005) and others give effect to these constitutional rights for adults and children. The provision of Sexual and Reproductive health (SRH) services to learners is additionally addressed in several national policies and guidelines, most notably the Department of Health’s National HCT guideline, the Standard Operating Procedures for the Provision of Sexual and Reproductive Health, Rights and Social Services in Secondary Schools (hereafter referred to as DBE SOPs) the multi-departmental Integrated School Health Policy (ISHP), and the Department of Basic Education National Policy on HIV, STIs and TB for Learners, Educators, School Support Staff and Officials in all Primary and Secondary Schools in the Basic Education Sector (hereafter referred to as DBE National Policy). However, poor alignment of the relevant laws and policies is a significant barrier to service delivery, and there is a need for ongoing advocacy work to clarify grey areas and ensure that adolescents are able to easily access SRH services, especially in secondary schools. Schools are an important entry point because there is a high rate of learner retention in South Africa and, once out of school, it is difficult to reach young people [Ref: The World’s Largest HIV Epidemic in Crisis: HIV in South Africa]. The reality is that school-based SRH services are currently not offered to learners in any of the country’s 9 provinces, with the exception of a handful of school health programs driven by non-governmental organizations.

As the country seeks to implement national policies on school-based health education and services it is important that the evidence and experiences of existing school health programs be accessible to service providers and role-players. It is for this reason that MSF has developed this School Health Program “toolkit”, detailing the approach we followed in developing the MSF School Health Program in King Cetshwayo District in KwaZulu-Natal Province.

Access the tool here.

Stigma

NHIVNA Best Practice - The language of HIV: A Guide for Nurses

"Language impacts how we think about ourselves, and shapes how we see others. Over the past 30 years, people living with HIV have helped shape the language we use and their work has changed the way we discuss death, dying, sex and sexuality; ensuring that new discourse in the HIV field does not stigmatise, but rather catalyses empowerment for community members. Language has shaped person-centred care and, on the whole, people living with HIV have become empowered self-managers informing the delivery of healthcare services."

This resource is developed for nurses but very useful for all of us working with people living with or affected by HIV.

Ways to stop HIV Stigma and Discrimination

Online tool provided by CDC described as follows:

"You might be wondering how you can address an issue as complex as HIV stigma. But there are many small things you can do that will make a big difference."

"If each of us commits to making positive changes in our families and communities, we can help end HIV stigma and work to stop HIV together. Here are two resources to get you started:

Stigma Language Guide. The words we use matter. Learn how to talk openly about HIV and stigma in a way that can help empower those living with HIV.
Stigma Scenarios: Support in Action. Read through examples of situations that show how HIV stigma can happen in any setting and learn ways to take action.
"

Advocacy Tools

Pediatrics Advocacy Brief

Interfaith Health Program, Emory University. January 2019

On 17 November 2017, leaders of major pharmaceutical and medical technology companies, multilateral organisations, donors, governments, organisations providing or supporting services for children living with HIV, and other key stake- holders participated in a High-Level Discussion on Scaling Up Early Diagnosis and Treatment of Children and Adolescents. The meeting was convened by His Eminence Peter Appiah Kodowo Cardinal Turkson, Prefect of the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development, with the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), and Caritas Internationalis, and in close collaboration with the World Council of Churches-Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance (WCC-EAA), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the Elizabeth Glaser Paediatric AIDS Foundation (EGPAF).

In recognition of the urgency of making more optimal paediatric ARV formulations available in 2018 and beyond, the participants of the High-Level Dialogue agreed to the following good faith commitments to focus, accelerate, and collaborate on the development, registration, introduction, and roll-out of the most optimal paediatric formulations and diagnostics.

Download here

Common Voice Initiative

The AIDS epidemic is at a critical point. A remarkable, decades-long global effort has given us the capability to end AIDS as a public health threat. However, the global political will to end AIDS is weakening, raising the risk of a major resurgence of the epidemic in the 2020s. Strong advocacy by religious voices is vital to ensuring that the world perseveres and finally brings the AIDS epidemic to an end. See video of portions of a panel about Religion and the AIDS Epidemic featuring Dr. Jonathan Quick and Dr. David Barstow at the CCIH 2018 conference.
 

Gender Advocacy Brief

Interfaith Health Program, Emory University. January 2019

Tremendous progress against AIDS over the past 15 years has inspired a global commitment to end the epidemic by 2030. Of the 37.6 million people living with HIV, 20.9 million are accessing HIV treatment as of July 2017. Through support from the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), and other partners, more people are living longer, healthier lives with HIV. However, women are still disproportionately affected by the HIV epidemic around the globe; as of 2016, AIDS-related illnesses were the lead- ing cause of death among women of reproductive age (15-49 years), and new infection rates are 44% higher in young women than in young men.1 Young men, however, also have an increased risk of dying from HIV. In many communities around the world, faith-based organisations (FBOs) are finding ways to work with those living with HIV in ways that shift harmful cultural and gender norms to provide HIV information and care to both men and women.

Through the Start Free, Stay Free, AIDS Free Framework and the PEPFAR/UNAIDS Faith Initiative, PEPFAR and UNAIDS are working together with four faith partners to strengthen the engagement of faith leaders and communities to address gender inequities, toxic masculinities, and sexual and gender-based violence, and to create demand for treatment and support retention in care.2,3

Working together, UNAIDS, PEPFAR, and their faith-based partners are working to support women’s empowerment, address gender-based violence, and encourage men to understand their own roles and responsibilities in supporting HIV prevention and treatment and addressing gender inequities.

Download here.

Migration

ROAD MAP - HIV among Migrants and Refugees: Strengthening collaboration among faith-based organizations, multi-lateral organizations, governments, and civil society addressing HIV risk, provision of services, and advocacy.

70 individuals from 40 organizations, representing 36 countries gathered in the Ecumenical Center, Geneva, on 20 and 21 February 2019 to develop a Road map for strengthening collaboration among faith-based organizations, multi-lateral organizations, governments, and civil society addressing HIV risk, provision of services, and advocacy.

Migration and displacement can place people in situations of higher risk of vulnerability to HIV, and have been identified in certain contexts as an independent risk factor for HIV. In many countries, refugees and migrants, and, in particular, mi- grants in irregular situations, face complex obstacles, including a lack of access to health-care services and social protec- tions. In addition, social exclusion leaves refugees and migrants highly vulnerable to HIV infection. However, migration and displacement do not equal HIV vulnerability and existing HIV policies and programmes targeting migrants and refugees may actually contribute to increased stigma and discrimination. Efforts must be made to reduce barriers to health services for the benefit of refugees, migrants, their communities and the global response to HIV.

Read or download.

Human Rights

Baseline assessment –South Africa Scaling up Programs to Reduce Human Rights- Related Barriers to HIV and TB services

This report documents the results of a baseline assessment carried out in South Africa to sup- port its efforts to scale up programs to reduce human-rights-related barriers to HIV and TB services. Since the adoption of its new Strategy 2017-2022: Investing to End Epidemics, the Global Fund has joined with country stakeholders, technical partners and other donors in a major effort to expand investment in programmes to remove such barriers in national re- sponses to HIV, TB and malaria (Global Fund, 2016a). While the Global Fund will support all countries to scale up programmes to remove barriers to HIV, TB and malaria services, it is providing intensive support in 20 countries in the context of its corporate Key Performance Indicator (KPI) 9: “Reduce human rights barriers to services: # countries with comprehen- sive programs aimed at reducing human rights barriers to services in operation (Global Fund, 2016b).” Based on criteria that included needs, opportunities, capacities and partner- ships in the country, the Global Fund selected South Africa, with 19 other countries, for inten- sive support to scale up programmes to reduce barriers to services. This baseline assessment, focusing on HIV and TB, is a component of the package of support the country will receive.

The objectives of the baseline assessment were to:

  • Identify the key human-rights-related barriers to HV and TB services in South Africa;
  • Describe existing programmes to reduce such barriers;
  • Indicate what a comprehensive response to existing barriers would comprise in terms of the types of programmes, their coverage and costs; and,
  • Identify the opportunities to bring these to scale over the period of the Global Fund’s 2017- 2022 strategy.

The assessment took place between October and November 2017. It included a desk review, key informant interviews, and focus group discussions. It was conducted by the Health Economics and AIDS Research Division (HEARD) of the University of KwaZulu Natal under contract to the Global Fund.

Download here

Human Rights and Religious Faith

Lecture by Dr Rowan Williams, Ecumenical Centre, Geneva, 28 February 2012.
Download here

Counselling and Support

HIV & AIDS Counseling Guide for Religious Leaders

Africa Christian Health Associations Platform (ACHAP) (2019)

The Africa Christian Health Associations Platform launched an HIV counselling guide for religious leaders. The guide will to help religious leaders to provide much-needed support to congregants as they try to cope with issues related to HIV and AIDS. 

ACHAP developed the guide in partnership with the National AIDS Control Council (NACC), INERELA-Kenya, CHAK, SUPKEM, The SDA Church, National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK), IMA World Health, St Paul’s University, Organisation of African Instituted Churches and Evangelical Alliance of Kenya

The HIV/AIDS counselling guide for religious leaders:

– Considers the spectrum of client needs – the physical, psychological and socio-economic – to enable them to attain optimal physical, mental and social health and functioning

– Appreciates the role of ongoing support, including information, to help avoid transmission to others

– Acknowledges the place of science in HIV/AIDS but continues to support people using religious tools that they already ascribe to

– Respects individual religious convictions and beliefs of people seeking counselling and does not proselytise.

Development of the guide followed the realisation that religious leaders, although strategically positioned for HIV and AIDS counselling, do not necessarily have adequate skills to fully meet the needs and expectations of congregants who seek such services from them. The guide will also be useful in helping to tackle the continued problem of faith healing.

The guide is available for download from the ACHAP website.

Adherence Clubs: An Essential Strategy To Care for People Living with HIV: Guidelines for Churches and Christian Ministries

by LifeRise AIDS Resources | 2019 |

Adherence clubs are an essential strategy to provide supportive care for PLWH to enable them to be stable on lifesaving HIV treatment (called “ART”) and stay on it lifelong. These guidelines will equip churches and Christian ministries to facilitate adherence clubs for people living with HIV. A vision and rationale for the clubs is covered, as well as practical guidance to conduct the clubs, including delivery of ART medicines to members in club meetings. These guidelines cover five building blocks for adherence clubs: WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE and WHY.  The WHAT building block includes four A’s: Attendance; Assessment; Adherence; and ART, designed as an easy way to remember the four most important tasks to accomplish in adherence clubs. 

https://www.ccih.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/LifeRise-Adherence-Club-Guidelines.pdf

Common Vision: Faith-based partnerships to Sustain Progress Against HIV 2019

The U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEP- FAR), together with the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), launched an initiative in 2015 to strengthen collaboration with faith-based partners in response to The Lancet Series on faith-based health care and the UNAIDS The Gap Report. The purpose of the FBO initiative was scaling up partnerships with faith-based organizations (FBOs) and addressing issues highlighted as important by The Lancet Series and the The Gap Report.1,2,3 This report describes the work of the PEPFAR/ UNAIDS FBO Initiative between 2015 and 2019, using these two documents as its framework.

Focus areas of the PEPFAR/UNAIDS FBO Initiative were designed to address issues highlighted by The Lancet Series and priority actions identified by The Gap Report in line with the UNAIDS Strategy and PEPFAR 3.0.8,9 They include work in six areas:

1) documenting the contributions of faith-based partners,

2) sustaining and strengthening faith-based pediatric and adolescent HIV responses;

3) building the capacity of local, regional, and national FBOs alongside local religious communities to offer compassionate and evidence-based HIV services;

4) challenging gender inequities and sexual and gender-based violence;

5) reducing stigma by articulating a model of justice and inclusion through religious structures and offering services to marginalized communities; and

6) advocating for strong, sustained HIV programs in local, national, and global contexts.

For this reason, this report describes the work of the faith-based implementing partners of the FBO Initiative in these areas as compared to the recommendations in The Lancet Series and the The Gap Report.

However, the report also recognizes that the PEPFAR/ UNAIDS FBO Initiative does not stand alone in responding to HIV, that the initiative has its own limitations, and that there has been a much wider response of the faith community to HIV over more than thirty years. Other case studies are therefore included to show the scope of this wider response as illustrative snapshots even though this report cannot comprehensively convey the scale and diversity of the response.

Available at: http://ihpemory.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/A-Common-Vision-Report_FINAL_2019.pdf

 

Called to Care Toolkit

Strategies for Hope

This is a series of practical, action-oriented booklets and mini-manuals on issues related to HIV/AIDS, designed for use by church leaders, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. It was published between 2005 and 2011, so some of the information around treatment may be outdated, but it provides very useful practical tools and advice, particularly for resource -constrained settings.

For information on how to run training workshops using these manuals, please see the Called to Care Users' Guide

Some of the materials are also available in
Portuguese -
Swahili -
French -

1. Positive Voices. Religious leaders living with or personally affected by HIV and AIDS

The first booklet in the series, Positive Voices, brings together the experiences of 14 African religious leaders – 12 Christians and two Muslims – who are either living with HIV or are personally affected by HIV and AIDS. They include ordained religious leaders and lay people who have a leading role in their faith community. This booklet has three main purposes:

  • First, to enable church groups and communities to discuss HIV and AIDS, health, sexual behaviour, and issues related to religion and culture more freely and openly than is usually the case.
  • Second, to demonstrate that being HIV-positive is not a cause for shame, despair, fatalism or discrimination.
  • Third, to help reduce HIV-related stigma within faith communities by demonstrating that religious leaders too contract HIV, but that they can also live positively and openly with the virus, serving God even more meaningfully and effectively than before.

Download as PDF File

2. Making it Happen. A guide to help your congregation do HIV/AIDS work

Church congregations or communities may feel ‘called to care’ about people infected with, or affected by, HIV/AIDS. But what can they do to assist and support such people? How can they address the broader issue of preventing the further spread of HIV — and how can they deal with the sensitive and divisive issues of stigma, shame, discrimination and denial?

The second book in the series, Making it Happen, is designed to help church leaders and congregations to develop and implement a project that addresses some of the challenges of HIV/AIDS.​
Download as PDF File

3. Time to Talk. A guide to family life in the age of AIDS

The third book in the toolkit, Time to Talk is a handbook to enable churches to discuss family life and sex in the context of the global AIDS epidemic. Intended for use by pastors, deacons and religious Sisters, as well as catechists and lay church leaders.

Contains role plays, games, quizzes, discussions, Bible studies and other participatory exercises. 

Download as PDF File

4. Training guidelines on the pastoral aspects of the HIV epidemic

Books 4 and 5 in the CALLED TO CARE series are based on 12 years of experience by the Organization of African Instituted Churches (OAIC), based in Nairobi, Kenya.  The author, Nicta Lubaale, is an ordained pastor who has been involved in faith-based and community responses to HIV and AIDS since 1991.  Since January 2007 he has been General Secretary of the OAIC.

Book no. 4, Pastoral Action on HIV and AIDS, contains guidelines for training pastors and lay church leaders in addressing the pastoral challenges of the AIDS epidemic.  These challenges affect churches in their teachings about sickness and healing, their forms of worship and their pastoral ministries.

Both books include case studies of the work of several African independent churches which, with the support of the OAIC, have responded in particularly innovative ways to the challenges of the AIDS epidemic.  These stories are drawn from OAIC member churches in Kenya and Uganda, but they are relevant to churches throughout sub-Saharan Africa, and beyond.

Both books contain numerous role plays, discussion guidelines, Biblical references, individual case studies and illustrations by African artists.

Download as PDF File

5. Community Action on HIV and AIDS

Training guidelines on community based issues related to HIV and AIDS

Books 4 and 5 in the CALLED TO CARE series are based on 12 years of experience by the Organization of African Instituted Churches (OAIC), based in Nairobi, Kenya.  The author, Nicta Lubaale, is an ordained pastor who has been involved in faith-based and community responses to HIV and AIDS since 1991.  Since January 2007 he has been General Secretary of the OAIC.

Book no. 5, Community Action on HIV and AIDS, is designed to help church leaders in dealing with social, cultural and economic issues related to the AIDS epidemic at community level.  It contains sections on topics such as the sexual abuse of children, domestic violence, widow inheritance and property grabbing by relatives - issues which have been exacerbated in many African countries by the AIDS epidemic.

Both books include case studies of the work of several African independent churches which, with the support of the OAIC, have responded in particularly innovative ways to the challenges of the AIDS epidemic.  These stories are drawn from OAIC member churches in Kenya and Uganda, but they are relevant to churches throughout sub-Saharan Africa, and beyond.

Both books contain numerous role plays, discussion guidelines, Biblical references, individual case studies and illustrations by African artists.

Download as PDF File

6. The Child Within. Connecting with children who have experienced grief and loss

This 68-page workbook, containing numerous illustrations, was developed in collaboration with Masangane (‘to embrace’ in Xhosa), an orphan care project supported by the Moravian Church in South Africa’s Eastern Province.  It arose out of a need expressed by volunteer caregivers who were experiencing serious difficulties in looking after orphaned children.

The Child Within breaks new ground in promoting resilience in children who have suffered grief and personal loss.  It does so by enabling adults who are child care-givers - as parents, guardians, volunteers or professionals - to rediscover and appreciate their own ‘child within’.  Through structured workshop sessions, participants learn how to communicate more openly and effectively with children.

The workbook incorporates a Christian approach to children as ‘a gift from the Lord’ (Psalm 127:3), but can be used by a wide variety of community groups and organisations.  Although based on professional research on child and adolescent development, the book is written in clear, simple language, and is easily accessible to non-professional child caregivers.  

Download as PDF File

7. Call to Me. How the Bible speaks in the age of AIDS

Call to Me is no. 7 in the CALLED TO CARE toolkit, which is designed for use by churches, faith-based organisations, NGOs and community groups, especially in sub-Saharan Africa.

This 76-page handbook consists of 20 Bible studies on topics related to HIV and AIDS, e.g. sex and sexuality; healing; death, grief and mourning; stigma, discrimination and denial; church leadership; marriage; fear and anxiety; and children.  It is written in simple, clear language, and contains 22 drawings by Zimbabwean artist, Mashet Ndhlovu. 
The authors of Call to Me are 12 church leaders in four African countries: Ghana, South Africa, Tanzania and Zambia.  They come from a wide ecumenical background, consisting of Anglican, Catholic, Lutheran, Methodist, Pentecostal and Reformed churches. In South Africa, two groups of people living with HIV helped to develop three of the Bible studies.

Call to Me is action-oriented.  It is designed to enable churches and community groups to deal with difficult, sensitive issues related to the AIDS epidemic, and to decide on ways of dealing with these.  Each Bible study consists of seven clearly defined steps, leading to a session in which the participants suggest and discuss ways in which particular issues and problems can be addressed.  The book concludes with an appendix of basic facts about HIV and AIDS, written in simple, non-technical language. 

Download as PDF File

8. My Life - Starting Now Knowledge and skills for young adolescents

Personal identity - making decisions - peer pressure - values - HIV and AIDS - love - sex ….  These are just a few of the topics covered by My Life - Starting Now.  This 80-page manual, no. 8 in the CALLED TO CARE toolkit, is designed especially for use with young people aged 10 to 15.

The manual takes a participatory approach to teaching and learning, using role plays, case studies, games, stories, quizzes, Bible study and artwork to promote discussion and explore critical life skills for young people.  It aims to empower young people to take charge of their lives in a positive way.  It also includes sessions for parents and guardians on their roles in guiding, supporting and educating young people. 

The co-authors of the book - Lucy Steinitz in Namibia and Eunice Kamaara in Kenya - have combined their vast experience of training young people in life-skills and producing educational materials on HIV, gender, sex and sexual behaviour.  Illustrations are by the Namibian artist, Marika Matengu, and the Zambian artist, Danny Chiyesu.

Download as PDF File

9. More and Better Food. Farming, climate change, health and the AIDS epidemic

More and Better Food is an essential guide for food security in the age of climate change and the AIDS epidemic.  It presents basic information about food and health, managing soil and water, and improving productivity through organic farming methods which help to address the challenges of climate change.  Written in clear, simple language, the book contains numerous participatory exercises for teaching and learning new farming techniques through practical activities, and is well illustrated with line drawings. 

The co-authors: Rev Dr Anne Bayley is a writer and consultant on HIV and related issues.  She is a former Professor in the School of Medicine at University Teaching Hospital, Lusaka, Zambia.  Mugove Walter Nyika is an environmental educator based in Malawi, with wide experience of permaculture and of integrated land use design for school communities.

Download as PDF File

10. Parenting: A Journey of Love

Knowledge and skills for parents and guardians

Focuses on the knowledge and skills which parents and guardians need to provide their children with protection against threats to their health and wellbeing, and to give them the best possible start in life. Uses stories, poems, quotes, Bible studies, games and participatory exercises.

The author, Fulata Lusungu Moyo, PhD, is a mother on a journey of love with her three sons and numerous other young lives. As Programme Executive for Women and Gender with the World Council of Churches, she finds joy in learning from other women and men about their own parenting journeys. She is also Coordinator of the Circle of African Women Theologians. A Malawian national, she holds a doctorate in Gender and Sexual Ethics from the School of Religion and Theology at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.

Download as PDF File

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