In accordance with its mission statement, SRC strives to conduct research of benefit to the community, in partnership with the community. Community Engagement (CE) processes and activities have always been an integral part of the research process at Setshaba Research Centre (SRC), and have been in place since inception of the organisation. The community engagement team has managed to establish a strong foothold in the community over the years, which has contributed greatly towards the success of clinical trials conducted at SRC. CE includes partnering and networking with different stakeholders within the community and surrounding areas as well as providing community education, conducting social outreach programmes, workshops and other interventions.
Community engagement is not a stand-alone process, which can be conducted by us alone, but rather it is reliant on partnering with various other stakeholders, organisations and individuals who also have an interest in the community. We have an established database of various organisations and other stakeholders which includes local Non-Government Organisations (NGO’s), activist groups and other individuals or organisations. These all form a key component in our community engagement process and we often partner with these organisations in the conducting of our community engagement activities.
The Department of Health (DOH) and local government are considered important stakeholders within our CE process. We have an established Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the District DOH, which aids in providing support to our recruitment and other research processes. SRC and the DOH have developed a valuable relationship that is mutually beneficial.
Setshaba CRS has formed strong community relations over the years through carefully negotiated community engagement (CE) and education processes and has gained the trust of the community.