Tag Archives: Gumare

A Month in Shakawe: The Field Team at Work

Keotshepile Molokwane (right) interviews a woman in her yard in Shakawe.

By Martha Henry

Tourists who visit Botswana’s scenic Okavango Delta rarely visit Shakawe, the most remote village participating in the Botswana Combination Prevention Project (BCPP), a large HIV-prevention trial of over 100,000 people. The results of the trial will likely end up as an orderly table published in a prestigious medical journal. Though the numbers in that table may provide much-needed evidence on how best to operate HIV/AIDS programs across the globe, they won’t show the hard work, mistakes, corrections, and triumphs of the field team. The data won’t reveal the thousands of daily interactions between the Research Assistants (RAs) and the villagers—the stories condensed into each data point. Continue reading

Research Nomads

Keitumetse Tshwene, a Research Assistant, carries the equipment necessary for in-home HIV testing and counseling.

By Martha Henry

Each of the two field teams for the Botswana Combination Prevention Project (BCPP) consists of 16 Research Assistants (RAs), seven drivers, two supervisors, two lab assistants, and two IT assistants. Team members come from across Botswana. In addition to Setswana, many of the RAs speak other local languages. They range in age from early 20s to late 30s. Many of them worked as HIV counselors before joining the team. Continue reading