It is with great pleasure that I present this Meaningful Involvement of PLHIV and Affected Communities (“MIPA”) Audit Report and Action Plan to Community.
Clause 3.1(1) of WAAC’s Constitution outlines our objectives. Everything WAAC does, and hopes to do, emanates from this essential text. In the first line, the words “in partnership with our community” appear. Thus, “partnership” is central to everything.
For WAAC, the HIV Positive Community has (and will) always be a key partner.
To honor the lived experience of HIV Positive people and to recognize their continuing and vital contribution, WAAC completed its first MIPA Audit in 2017/2018.
The Report follows an extensive organization-wide audit of WAAC’s programs and services to investigate how HIV Positive people contribute to the work of the agency and what we can do to more meaningfully involve them. A consultative committee made up of Board Members, People Living with HIV, staff and key stakeholders painstakingly reviewed every aspect of the WAAC business against the extensive MIPA criteria. From the M-Clinic to Freedom Centre, from PLHIV Peer Support to NSEP, Safe Schools, Bequest Programs to Case Management & Counselling, no corner of WAAC’s operations was spared MIPA’s investigative reach.
Over the course of 12 months, honest and robust deliberations occurred at a series of 10 meetings held at the WAAC Boardroom. A broad spectrum of perspectives, experiences and ideas provided integrity to a complex but necessary conversation.
In a difficult year that saw weather events, office damage and closure, a competitive tender and organisation restructure, the MIPA audit charged ahead, such was WAAC’s commitment to it. The result is an important piece of work that will serve to comprehensively hard-wire the agency’s engagement with HIV Positive and affected communities to its enduring pursuit of healthy, inclusive and safe communities.
On behalf of the Board, I thank all those involved with this inaugural project.