OPEN SOCIETY INSTITUTE FELLOWSHIP: GABORONE, BOTSWANA

I was awarded a fellowship by the Open Society Institute to go to Gaborone Botswana and assist the NGO, Botswana Network on Ethics Law and HIV/AIDS (BONELA), with developing materials for a treatment literacy campaign. BONELA's "...mission is to create and enable a just environment for those infected and affected by HIV and AIDS." People in Botswana face discrimination when they are identified as being infected by the HIV/AIDS virus, which discourages regular testing or disclosure and can result in job loss. BONELA travels across Botswana, which has one of the highest infection rates in Africa, to prevent these ramifications and provide support to people.

I arrived at BONELA for the first of four weeks and began familiarizing myself with their needs and operations. I sat in on meetings and was also able to go a on a training session in Kanye a couple hours drive outside the capitol.

 

BONELA's offices. Health education meeting in the town of Kanye.

 

I began working with BONELA's Treatment Literacy office on a poster campaign to encourage people to seek treatment from doctors, take their treatment regularly, report side effects from treatment, and talk to family members about their health. We decided it would be effective to depict a real person in these situations and began to think of it as a mini graphic novel with a single character.

A regular poster format had proved to be the best mode for distribution in past campaigns. It was  evident that BONELA lacked the visual material and photographs in house to produce the poster, so I began setting up photo shoots in order to obtain the visuals needed for the poster.

 

Initial poster design sketch and mockup.

 

Obtaining visual assets at a local hospital.

 

Kennedy agreed to be the figure in the final poster. Working with color palettes for the printer.

 

Print proofs and selecting the final version.

 

Final versions of the poster.

 

 

After the poster and image bank I provided, I designed some additional materials for the organization including an identity for the Treatment Literacy office, and a pamphlet highlighting the rights of children who are infected by HIV/AIDS.

 

Identity for Treatment Literacy office. Children's rights pamphlet cover using pre-existing illustration work.