People living with HIV (PLHIV) NACOPHA from Itigi district council in Singida region formed a new Cluster, which has a total of 30 members (Male:10, Female:20) as part of important aspect in HIV response at the community level.
The CHAC of Itigi Municipal Council Mr.Yona Lotti participated in establishing the new Cluster and election of Cluster leaders, which took place on 5th November 2021 at Itigi District Council in the Singida region. As per the principles and constitution of NACOPHA, the election was conducted following the constitutional guidelines, laws and regulations which require both the formation of the Cluster and the election of its leadership to be conducted on the same date. Mr.Thomas Kimako is the newly elected chairperson of the Itigi Cluster. 30 Cluster members participated in the election, supported by representatives from NACOPHA and CHACC.
The Itigi Cluster is among the 180 NACOPHA Clusters operating in 26 regions of mainland Tanzania. Each Cluster assists several PLHIV empowerment groups, of which they meet in wards and villages levels all over the country to support each other, and ensure access to HIV services and viral load suppression. PLHIV Clusters and empowerment groups have a critical role in contributing to the country attainment of the national and Global targets of 95 95 95, because their members identify people who are at risk of HIV infection and link them to testing, care and treatment services, and support them to stay on treatment.
PLHIV Clusters and Support groups are a trusted community resource and well equipped to identify people who are most vulnerable to HIV, many of whom hide due to stigma and discrimination. They also support an enhanced adherence and retention to antiretroviral treatment (ART) and promote referrals and linkages to clinical services and activities that socially and economically empower PLHIV at the community level.