Strengthening education, awareness and treatment for HIV/AIDS
SABMiller is working to contribute to the reduction of HIV/AIDS within its sphere of influence. The HIV/AIDS pandemic is particularly relevant to the company’s operations in Africa where, in many countries in which the company operates, more than 5% of the population is HIV-positive. Here, SABMiller provides education and awareness programmes to all employees, including access to voluntary counselling and testing. If diagnosed, employees have access to a managed health care system if they have no alternative medical provision. The company actively encourages participation and pays for treatment. Spouses and dependants are also eligible for the programme. In addition, SABMiller appoints peer educators who act as agents within the business to help overcome the stigma and prejudice surrounding HIV/AIDS – a barrier to effective treatment.
SABMiller applies its experiences in Africa to its operations around the world. The company also shares its experience and knowledge of tackling HIV/AIDS externally with other private sector organisations, NGOs, multilateral organisations and local and international governments. For example, ‘Makanudo’ is a wellness programme for all employees in Honduras. Recent activities have included an awareness-raising campaign highlighting the causes and prevention of HIV/AIDS. The programme has included regular employee workshops with educational materials provided to attendees. NGOs such as Hogar Renacer, a local charity which works with people at risk from HIV/AIDS, and other associations working and caring for people affected by HIV/AIDS, have participated in these workshops. The Honduran Ministry of Health is also a key partner in the awareness-raising campaign, providing guidance and assistance for the workshops.