An evaluation of the influence of an Hiv/Aids peer education programme at a higher education institution In the Western Cape
South Africa is now in its eighteenth year of democracy. However, a major problem that we are facing is the scourge of the HIV/AIDS pandemic throughout Africa, with the most seriously affected areas being in Sub-Saharan Africa. Despite a National Strategic Plan (NSP) for HIV/AIDS, government authorities have been unable to stem the tide of daily HIV infections amongst all people. Education seems to be one of the most powerful weapons to fight this pandemic; hence it is expected of HEls to respond to this problem in a meaningful manner in order to stem the tide of the HIV/AIDS pandemic on all university campuses. HEAIDS took the initiative to bring all role players in HEls together to devise plans for how to deal with the pandemic at HEls. Despite the fact that 22 out of the 23 higher education institutions surveyed by HEAIDS in 2008 were engaged in peer education training programmes, none of them monitored or evaluated these programmes. The aim of this study is to evaluate and establish the influence of a peer education programme amongst students at a selected HEI in the Western Cape. An evaluation research design was employed, using a mixed methods approach to collect data. A Logic Model was developed which assisted me with the evaluation design. I used Bandura's social cognitive theory (SCT) to assist me with the analysis and interpretation of the data. The study attempted to understand the key issues involved in the peer education programme, challenges faced by staff in the implementation of these programmes, how peer educators experienced the training programmes, as well as the experiences of other students who interacted with the peer educators.