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Representatives of the island’s parish AIDS associations have benefited from a two-day workshop designed to build communication skills and strengthen their working relationship.
The event, organised by the National AIDS Committee (NAC), was held at the Invercauld Hotel in Black River, St. Elizabeth from July 26 to 27 and was the first of the NAC’s bi-annual training workshops for 2005.
“Part of the mandate of the National AIDS Committee is to promote the multi-sectoral response to HIV/AIDS and one of the ways we do that is by supporting parish AIDS associations,” informed Executive Director, Ruth Jankee.
Miss Jankee said, “we bring together representatives from all the parish AIDS associations so that they can share their experiences, build network and we try and provide some type of training that will assist them”, adding that “this time we are focusing on various aspects of communication”.
The two-day workshop saw representatives from the Systems Information Technology Unit (SITU) of the Ministry of Health and information technology companies training participants on how to communicate in a public setting, how to use the Internet, and using the computer to do their financial transactions and keeping track of their accounts.
“The idea of focusing on communication came from the members of the AIDS associations .,” said Liaison Officer at the NAC, Newton Wynter.
Mr. Wynter added, “the members do a lot of presentations with small groups and community members, so we want to improve on that level of communication where they are concerned”.
He noted, “as it relates to technology . we can show them how they can get information to us and get feedback from us using technology”, which will improve communication between the parish associations and the headquarters.
The workshop also included presentations from the parish AIDS association members, a discussion session and a question and answer segment.
Representatives from the International Development Partners (IDP), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) also participated.