Botswana Lesotho map

Lesotho and Botswana have the second and fourth highest prevalence rates of HIV in the world respectively.


Women and girls in sub-Saharan Africa continue to be at a higher risk of HIV infection, with gender inequality and gender-based violence at the centre of that risk. Gender inequalities and gender-based violence rob women and girls of their fundamental human rights, including the right to education, health and economic opportunities. This increases their risk of HIV infection and blocks access to services.


In sub-Saharan Africa, in 2020, every week around 4200 adolescent girls and young women aged 15–24 years became infected with HIV.


“Today’s young people are dealing with multiple challenges and they have to take on so much—at school, within changing family dynamics, societal expectations. They question their norms, values and their own worth,” said Ms Masisi. “We need to treat them as leaders so that they can feel valued.”

(First Lady of Botswana, Neo Masisi reported at retreat, July 2019)

In Lesotho, HIV prevalence is five times higher among young women aged 20-24 years than among their male counterparts.

(LePHIA 2020)

Sentebale’s experience of working with children and young people has given us deep insight into their needs and expectations. We know that the starting point for our work and any successful response must be grounded in their reality and informed by their own expressed needs, desires and ambitions. We believe that a multi-sectoral approach to HIV, that tackles both the symptoms and root causes, is critical for success and sustainability.