SISONKE Botswana

Location

Gaborone
Botswana
Contact email: 
sisonkebw@gmail.com
Who do you work with?: 
Sisonke is a sex worker-led organisation consisting of 456 members across the country. Members are made up of male and female sex workers as well as immigrant sex workers from 5 districts in Botswana.
How are sex workers involved in your organisation?: 
We have trained 20 sex workers in each of the 5 districts as peer educators. Peer educators do membership drives, educate other sex workers on safe sex practices, sexual reproductive health and human rights.
Which of NSWP priority areas does your organisation work on?: 
Advocate for universal access to health services, including primary health care, HIV and sexual and reproductive health services
Speak out about violence against sex workers, including violence from police, institutions, clients, and intimate partners, while challenging the myth that sex work is inherently gender-based violence
Oppose human rights abuses, including coercive programming, mandatory testing, raids and forced rehabilitation
Challenge stigma and discrimination against sex workers, their families and partners, and others involved in sex work
Advocate for the economic empowerment and social inclusion of sex workers as sex workers
What are the two main challenges that the sex workers you work with face: 
Sex workers have knowledge about HIV/AIDS and STIs and safer sex practices but do not always apply this knowledge because of the stigma attached to their work or even the illegality which allows, for example, that condoms can be used as evidence of sex work. Sex workers are vulnerable to assault from clients.
Describe other areas of your work: 
We are also involved in economic empowerment or organisational development.