MPhil study projects

The impact of a Western Cape HIV prevention programme on young women aged 20-24 in Khayelitsha

Student: Zanele Mabaso
Country: South Africa

The aim of the study was to assess the knowledge and perceptions relating to a Western Cape HIV prevention programme among young women aged 20-24 in Khayelitsha. The experiences of young women who are immigrants and/or refugees in the area were reported, as well as the barriers to access healthcare services and HIV testing they experience.

The study used convenience sampling to collect data. This was done via a semi-structured and self-administered questionnaire and a semi-structured focus group interview.

A total of 37 respondents took part in the study. All were young females between the ages of 20 and 24 years. They came from socioeconomically vulnerable backgrounds, particularly people who were not employed or busy with education or training.

The study revealed that there is no relationship between knowledge and age, nor between age and education level. The level of knowledge of HIV/Aids based on age or education experience does not signify a lower probability of exposure to HIV transmission or of engaging in safer sexual activity. There are other key factors that contribute to women engaging in risky sexual behaviour even though they are knowledgeable about the importance of HIV prevention.