Thursday, 6 December 2012, was a very special day in Lesotho’s capital city, Maseru. Greeted by vibrant music and bright banners, guests arrived at the offices of Phela Health and Development Communications to attend the official launch of the Senakangoeli HIV and AIDS Resource Center.
In her welcome address, Phela’s Director, M’e Hope Dolo Serobanyane, gave an overview of her organization, explaining that Phela has a long history of equipping people with knowledge and skills. Spontaneous applause broke out as M’e Serobanyane announced that Phela has been operating in Lesotho for more than a decade. She said that Phela has had the dream of establishing a resource center for many years and through collaboration with the Knowledge for Health Project (K4Health), supported by PEPFAR and USAID, this dream was finally realized.
Senakangoeli is a Sesotho name for the glow-worm. A colleague explained to me that in Sesotho culture, the glow-worm is an omen of a bright future. The name was therefore chosen for the center to signify its objective: To improve lives through being an accessible source of reliable information on HIV and AIDS.
|Press interviewing Phela’s Director, M’e Hope Dolo Serobanyane||Attendees approaching the resource center|
Situated in Maseru’s industrial area, Senakangoeli provides access to a variety of information resources on HIV, AIDS and related health topics. The collection comprises of books, research papers, periodicals, toolkits, multimedia clips and grey literature.
In between speeches, youth from Kick4Life entertained guests with educational drama, song and poetry. In the closing remarks, M’e Leomile Nthabane, a member of the Phela board, expressed her gratitude for the support and fruitful partnerships that enabled the launch of the center. Following the celebrations, attendees toured the center, led by the Senakangoeli Coordinator, Mr Tumelo Monyane.
|Youth from Kick4Life||Inside the resource center|
The center is open Mondays to Fridays from 09:00-16:00 and is situated at Phela Health and Development Communications, Save the Children Building, Raboshabane Road, Industrial Area, Maseru, Lesotho.