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  • South Africa National AIDS Council, The Office of the Presidency and National Department of Health

The Task:

Design a new national HIV communication strategy that will increase uptake of HIV Counselling & Testing (HCT ) by all South Africans; make it significant enough to be announced on World Aids Day 2009 by President Zuma.



Our Role:

Matchboxology’s body of prevention communication experience together with insights from various academic studies informed a completely new strategic positioning – I AM RESPONSIBLE. This radically reversed responsibility from the State to the individual; the result being a nation of individuals rewarded with the power to take charge of their own personal wellness.

President Zuma embraced the new strategy on World AIDS Day in a Matchboxology designed event that departed from previous WAD stadium shows. Key health service providers were invited to the Capital; where the President personally applauded them for their services.

The President rallied this critical on-the-ground workforce by committing to lead the I Am Responsible campaign through his own actions. A nationally televised “fireside message” from the President confirmed his personal commitment to lead via his own actions. Research indicates that the very public Presidential HIV test was a big factor in achieving massive increases in HCT uptake.

Matchboxology designed the (HCT) campaign to allow the DoH to harness the resources and mobilization capacities of the private sector, faith-based organizations, NGOs, and foreign-donor efforts.

The distinctively visual campaign was created for both mass media and on-the-ground behavior change activations. Included was a very successful nationwide call to retired doctors and nurses to assist the DoH in delivering scaled up testing.


495% increase in HCT uptake

Before the campaign: 2 million South Africans testing annually.

Year 1 of the HCT campaign: over 11.9 million tested (Including a very public test by the President himself).

What the client saw:

  • Brand identity
  • Strategic and creative campaign
  • Rapid turnaround under pressure
  • Event design

What Matchboxology saw:

  • Opportunity to tie together myriad HIV prevention and treatment campaigns
  • Human Centered Positioning


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