Children’s Sector

Yezingane Network Sector Implementation Plan

Yezingane Network Background

The Yezingane Network also known as the Children’s Sector of the South African National AIDS Council (SANAC) is a civil society network of organisations working to address the impact of HIV and AIDS on children, families and communities in South Africa. Membership includes networks, organisations and individuals from government and civil society at local, provincial, regional, national, and international levels.The Network has a strong monitoring and advocacy function and facilitates the Children’s Sector participation in SANAC and related initiatives such as the National Strategic Plan (NSP) 2012-2016 for South Africa’s response to HIV, TB and STI’s. The Children’s Rights Centre is the Secretariat for the Network and is responsible for the overall coordination and communication within the Network. The Yezingane Network management structure consists of an Executive consisting of 5 members and of the five, three members serve on the SANAC plenary. The Working Group consisting of 15 voluntary members nominated from the general membership.
The Yezingane Network has over the past years developed a successful cohesive model of networking and collaboration. The successful elements of the Yezingane Network are large and varied. Yezingane Network consists of a large collective of organisations that focuses on a wide range of issues relating to children and HIV and AIDS.

The conceptual thinking of using a network for improving the lives of children in the poor health performing is:

  • The design of a network is informed by the type of network one wants to build. The Yezingane network has been built to connect organisations, to align them to a common purpose and to actively produce results.
  • Having a permanent Secretariat helps to keep the connectivity of the network functioning via constant information and communication
  • Organising regular opportunities for the network members to meet face to face, to get to know one another, share experiences, concerns and ideas strengthen network relationships.
  • Policy advocacy that is informed by actual experiences on the ground and well researched has a better chance of being heard
  • Yezingane is a network for social change that has the right mixture of experience on board to prepare well-informed input and can present this clearly in public forums, and therefore has a more holistic impact.
  • Distributive leadership makes the best of members’ expertise and potential and fosters a sense of shared responsibility.

Guiding principles

The guiding principles of the Yezingane approach can be described as:

  1. The Network concentrates on mobilising around the impact on HIV and AIDS on children and is aligned around a common purpose.
  2. The members share a common commitment – putting the interest of children first.
  3. The consensus decision making process requires open communication, regular consultation and transparency in order to develop a coordinated holistic approach.
  4. The Network is an independent civil society movement unafraid to challenge government when necessary
  5. It has a dedicated structure in the form of a Secretariat to ensure the day-to-day functioning and take responsibility for coordinating and managing the Network’s activities and products. The Children’s Rights Centre has acted as the Secretariat since its inception.

Yezingane Network Vision:

3 Zero’s:

  • Zero New Infections in Babies
  • Zero AIDS-related child deaths
  • Zero tolerance for child rights violations

Yezingane Network Goal:

Coordinate the Children’s Sector (Yezingane Network members) working with and HIV, TB and STI’s in South Africa to be in alignment with the NSP 2012- 2016 Goals, in order to effectively reduce incidence and prevalence of HIV, TB and STI’s in children.

Strategic Objective Sub-Objective SANAC Related Strategic Objectives Related activities M&E
Raise awareness of social and structural factors that drive HIV, TB and STI’s vulnerabilities in children. A well informed Children’s Sector (Yezingane Network members) on key policy, practice and research developments affecting children, to effectively support the implementation and monitoring of the NSP 2012 – 2016. SO 1: Addressing social and structural barriers that increase vulnerability to HIV, STI and TB infection Information and communication channels for YN: – Website forum, The Right Times e-magazine, social media, e-list, publications, info briefs produced by COP’s – Cell phone communications in rural areas of YN – SMS – Learner supplements in newspapers including The Teacher’ newspaper – media channels (Radio, TV, Print) – Google analytics for website, and social media analytics through Hootsuite, Facebook insights and Klout

-No. info briefs produced and distributed

Support Yezingane Network members in preventing new HIV, STIs and TB infections in children Best practices and guidelines established and disseminated for all Yezingane Network members to learn from regarding HIV, TB and STI Prevention methods. SO 2: Preventing new HIV, TB and STI infections Say it Forum and Communities of Practice produce guidelines for Yezingane Network to learn best prevention practices in each field. Activity levels on Say it forum. No. COP’s No. Guidelines produced and distributed No. Publications produced and distributed
Support Yezingane Network members in sustaining health and wellness in children, primarily by reducing deaths and disability from HIV, AIDS and TB Best practices and guidelines established and disseminated for all Yezingane Network members to learn from regarding Paediatric HIV, TB and STI Treatment. SO 3: Sustaining health and wellness (Treatment) Say it Forum and Communities of Practice produce guidelines for Yezingane Network to learn best treatment practices in each field. Activity levels on Say it forum. No. COP’s No. Guidelines produced and distributed No. Publications produced and distributed
Children’s Right to access to health services is protected through advocacy with duty bearers. Enhance HIV, TB and STI Policy and Practice affecting children through active engagement at all SANAC processes and structures including Plenary at National Level, Provincial AIDS Councils, and District, Local, and Ward AIDS Councils. SO 4: Increasing the protection of human rights and improving access to justice. SANAC meetings, advocacy, communications and monitoring, Position papers produced by COP’s. Campaigns and championed issues in COPs Identify 1 or 2 key policy and practice issues to target/ prioritise -submissions and inputs to policy development related to children -identify key individuals YN needs to influence (who and what message to direct at them) -policy briefs, summaries, translations, Braille, child friendly material -provincial mobilising -child participation in government (national and local) using relationships with schools – letter writing campaigns, and teaching children the system for active citizenship and the protocol for change -case alerts to legal institutions – single cases representing larger problems – amicus to pro bono issues Continuum of change: – Heightened awareness – Contribution to debate – Changed policies – Policy changes implemented – Positive changes to people’s lives – stories of significant impact. -IDP benchmark 2012

‘Communities of Practice’ Strategy

The Yezingane Network provides a highly skilled and influential platform to achieve the objectives outlined above. Below is an outline of the strategy which we will use in order to effectively harness the potential of Yezingane Network to achieve the goal and objectives outlined above.
“Communities of Practice” (or COPs) are groups of experts in the Yezingane Network who specialise in a specific area or field. COP’s will decide on key research questions in their field, identify advocacy issues to be taken up, detail best practices for all Yezingane Network members to use, and act as a referral for the Yezingane Network secretariat when dealing with any issues needing expert guidance. Each COP will communicate through the Yezingane Network Secretariat via email and an online discussion platform on the website.

Advocacy issues raised by each COP which require additional support and leverage will be taken up by the secretariat and will mobilise the whole of the children’s sector to advocate for in their contexts as well as at SANAC levels.
Key responsibilities of Communities of Practice:

  1. Develop guidelines and best practices for YN to learn from.
  2. Research needed in that field
  3. Priority advocacy issues which Yezingane Network should champion.
  4. Act as a referral for Yezingane Network Secretariat when expert opinion is needed

First 3 Communities of Practice to be piloted:

  1. Paediatric TB
  2. Elimination of Mother-To-Child Transmission (EMTCT)
  3. Education Setting (Integrated School Health Policy)

Communication and Advocacy Strategy for campaigns:

3 simultaneous campaigns for Yezingane Network to focus on:

  1. Paediatric TB
  2. Elimination of Mother-To-Child Transmission (EMTCT)
  3. School Health and teen pregnancy ((Integrated School Health Policy)
Role Name Organisation Telephone Fax Email Province, Town
Yezingane Network Chairperson and Sector Leader Ashraf Coovadia Rahima Moosa Mother and Child Hospital University of The Witwatersrand (Wits) 011 470 9290 011 673 4905 Gauteng (JHB)
Yezingane Network Executive Committee member Menaka Jayakody Children’s HIV/AIDS Network – CHAiN / Western Cape NACOSA – Networking AIDS Community of South Africa 021 552 0804 021 552 7742
W.Cape (Cape Town)
Yezingane Network Executive Committee member Anthony Ambrose  I-TECH South Africa  012 433 0138  012 346 2480  Gauteng (JHB)
Yezingane Network Executive Committee member Dumisile Nala Childline South Africa 031 207 9108 031 207 9082 KZN (Durban)

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