On Saturday, May 12th 2012, GRS Zambia hosted a Voluntary Counseling and Testing (VCT) Tournament in Mtendere, a high-density compound within Lusaka. The event was held beside Mahatma Gandhi Basic School, where we have implemented SKILLZ interventions in the past. This was our first VCT Tournament of the year in Zambia, and we are happy to say almost 600 people accessed Counseling and Testing services. There was a high turnout of youth testers, as 241 youth, including soccer players and community school participants, went for VCT.

In addition, for the first time ever at GRS, we held mobile Medical Male Circumcision (MMC) at the school grounds. The procedure was conducted by Marie Stopes International (MSI), and was sanctioned by the Ministry of Health for outreach service delivery.  There were four boys, between the ages of 16 and 24, who elected for the medical procedure. The operation takes between 25 to 30 minutes, and there is an additional pre and post counseling session dedicated to MMC. Each boy left the post counseling session knowing they now had 60% more protection against acquiring HIV.

All four boys were referred for review to the MSI clinic that operates in the same compound. We are very excited to explore the potential for scaling-up these activities at our outreaches across Lusaka and throughout other GRS programs.

Zambia Testing Event

A view of the VCT Tournament outside Lusaka. There are two football pitches on the left and center, testing and counseling in the way back right, and music and dancing in the foreground.