BHP Headquarters: Where the Work Happens

Botswana Harvard Partnership Building

The heart of Botswana Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership (BHP) operations is the busy, three-story building on the grounds of Princess Marina, the main public hospital in Gaborone. The crowded research building houses the Botswana- Harvard HIV Reference Laboratory, the Data Management Centre, and office space for BHP staff.

Celebrating 20 Years of Life-Saving Research

BHP 20th Anniversary Breakfast

Lives saved are always cause for celebration. The morning of January 26, 2017, in a hotel meeting room in Gaborone, Botswana, AIDS researchers, government officials, and others came together to celebrate 20 years of research, education, and training efforts by the Botswana Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership (BHP) to end the AIDS epidemic in southern Africa.

Essex Considers the BHP’s First Two Decades

Dr. Max Essex at the construction site for the Botswana-Harvard Partnership, Gaborone, Botswana, 2000.

In January, the Botswana Harvard Partnership (BHP) celebrated its 20th anniversary. At the ceremony in Gaborone, Dr. Max Essex , Chair of both the BHP and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health AIDS Initiative, delivered these remarks: Botswana and the Botswana Harvard Partnership have much to celebrate. Although AIDS in Africa was recognized as a major epidemic in east and central Africa in the early to mid 1980s, it…

Botswana Harvard Partnership Revisited: Remarks by Soon-Young Yoon

Botswana Harvard Partnership banner carried by runners.

Dr. Soon-Young Yoon is an anthropologist and advocate for women’s human rights. She made the following remarks at the Botswana Harvard Partnership’s 20th anniversary celebration in Gaborone on January 26, 2017: His Excellency former President Ketumile Masire, Honorable Minister Dorcus Makgatho, H. E. Ambassador Miller, distinguished speakers and guests. In 2001, I was honored to represent the Harvard AIDS Initiative’s International Advisory Council when we presented His Excellency former President Festus Mogae…

The Press and the Partnership: Remarks by Richard M. Smith

Richard M. Smith is a member of HAI’s International Advisory Council. He attended the Botswana Harvard Partnership’s 20th anniversary celebration in Gaborone, Botswana on January 26, 2017 and delivered the following remarks: It was in 1983 that I first heard about HIV/AIDS. I was the Executive Editor of Newsweek magazine, and our medical editors and reporters had come in to describe a mysterious disease that had received no national media attention,…

Morgan Packer: Doing What Needs to Get Done

  Loading file cabinets onto a truck in Lobatse, Botswana wasn’t in Morgan Packers’ job description. Neither was pressing contractors to bring renovations up to code at the Nyangabgwe Hospital Clinic, but unhesitatingly, she did both. “She’s someone you trust to do a job well and on time,” said Dr. Shahin Lockman, one of Morgan’s mentors. “She’s resourceful, adaptable, and has the ability to work with new people in a…

Dr. Raabya Rossenkhan: The Will to Make It Work

Dr. Raabya Rossenkhan working with a colleague in the BHP Lab

Raabya Rossenkhan was always interested in science, so majoring in biology at the University of Botswana (UB) was an obvious choice. When she was offered a scholarship to continue her education, she saw the need to study HIV/AIDS. The year was 2003. In Botswana, the HIV prevalence among pregnant women was almost 40%.

Finches, Whales, and now HIV

Herman Melville: Moby Dick CC- BY NC 2008 Wolf G.

By Elliot Eton Early on my first morning in Gaborone, I arrived at the Botswana-Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership (BHP) Research Lab and met Dr. Simani Gaseitsiwe, the Deputy Research Director. The night before, I had again reviewed several recently published articles he had sent to me, all analyzing immune system-driven HIV adaptation. He helped me synthesize this material, and we began to consider hypotheses to test.