SASH Fellow 2014 – 2015
Vuyiseka was born in the rural town of Idutywa in the Eastern Cape, South Africa. Where she did her primary and seconday schooling and completed her high schooling at Thandokhulu high in Mowbray, Cape Town. Vuyiseka comes from a poor working class family and she had to educate herself while working full-time. She currently holds a B.A. in health sciences and social services: Psychology from the University of South Africa, 2008. In 2011, she completed her MPhil in HIV management from the University of Stellenbosch. She also had an opportunity to spend 3 months doing social research methods as part of a Master course at the University of Sussex as a visiting scholar. She is currently doing a PhD at the University of KwaZulu-Natal focusing in HIV policy and Public health administration.
Vuyiseka joined the HIV movement when she was 22 after testing HIV positive in 2001. She began her activist life as a volunteer of the Treatment Action Campaign and was instrumental in building TAC branches in the Klipfontein district in Cape Town. She and and her family have history of being dwellersbin informal settlements in the Cape Flats. She became an employee tasked to build TAC’s Prevention and Treatment literacy programme, which she led for six years as a programme coordinator for the province. Over the years she rose as a strong leader to finally be elected as the General Secretary in 2008. In 2012 she was re-elected.
Vuyiseka is a woman openly living with HIV for 13 years and has been on ARV treatment for 11 years. She is committed to ensuring that People Living with HIV has a positive voice in the struggle against HIV, and that woman and girls have access to health services and live equally in society free of gender and sexual violence.
“Participation of people living with HIV/AIDS in policy developments in Khayelitsha and Lusikisiki” (2013-2016, Ph.D scholarship funding from Irish AID)
Critically examines participation in policy development and implementation by people and social movements affected by HIV/AIDS in Khayelitsha and Lusikisiki, within a national context of dramatic changes in the balance of forces between 2004-2014, which led to AIDS treatment access breakthroughs (as well as challenges).