Dear Friend of DKT,
There are an estimated 37 million people living with HIV around the world, with 2 million being added each year. 40% of these people live in countries where DKT operates. As such, education about and prevention of sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, is a major priority for DKT.
DKT is proud to apply diverse strategies to promote and ensure safe sex, including most importantly, the sale and distribution of male and female condoms and lubricant. We design programs that ensure such products are easily available and affordable, including to high-risk populations (see our stories from Ethiopia and Brasil below). We speak with consumers to understand why they don’t use condoms and design campaigns to address these concerns. In many of our clinics, we offer STI and HIV testing in addition to a suite of family planning services.
As a result, in 2015, DKT sold more than 620 million condoms and 5.7 million sachets and tubes of lubricant.
This newsletter highlights DKT’s important work to prevent HIV/AIDS around the world. We also share programmatic highlights from Myanmar as well as recent news coverage and a new white paper from DKT Pakistan.
Thank you for your continued support. Best regards,
Using mass media to increase condom use
|This Sutra ad combines safety with fun.|
Convincing men and women to use condoms can be tricky. We hear complaints that condoms are uncomfortable to wear, reduce feelings of closeness or intimacy, and interfere with the romantic ambiance before sex.
DKT has worked to address these concerns by promoting condoms in a sex-positive way, focusing not only on superior quality and efficacy, but also demonstrating how openness about condoms can bring partners closer together and how putting on a condom is a sensual part of sex instead of a hindrance.
We use a range of tones and messages to communicate how condoms can be safe and fun, and we highlight the variety of condoms available to showcase how different textures or flavors can actually enhance sex.
We’ve produced wonderful TV commercials to convey these messages: for instance, this classic Sensation condom ad from Ethiopia shows the wide variety of people who use condoms, whereas this new Sutra condom advertisements from Indonesia shows how safety and fun can go together. Elsewhere, DKT Ghana’s “Sexier Together” advertisement shows how putting on a condom is part of foreplay. Finally, this amusing commercialproduced by DKT Turkey is a literal take on how dotted condoms enhance pleasure.
Ethiopia’s HIV “Wise Up” campaign
Since 2005, DKT Ethiopia has been at the fore to educate high-risk populations like sex workers and truck drivers about HIV prevention. Wise-Up cultivates intimate, compassionate relationships with sex workers and their clients about healthy sexual behaviors, including conversations about condom use and partner reduction.
Partnerships with drop-in centers, peer educators, and other stakeholders have helped improve the reach of the Wise-Up campaign and HIV awareness in Ethiopia. To read more about Wise-Up, see DKT Ethiopia’s website here.
How an HIV prevention program achieved sustainability: A case study of DKT Brazil
|DKT Brazil started as an HIV program. Decades later, it is a vibrant social enterprise.|
In Brazil, DKT started in the early 1990s to make condoms more affordable and available across the country. In a recent article, DKT founder Phil Harvey chronicles how DKT’s model of distributing high-quality, affordably priced condoms grew the market and eventually led to sustainability. Today, DKT sells one out of every five condoms in Brazil and continues to support NGOs that conduct HIV education work. Read the full article here.
HIV testing services at DKT clinics
|The warm and caring staff at DKT Tanzania’s Trust clinics make clients feel welcome.|
Knowing one’s HIV status is key to seeking treatment and reducing transmission. In Mozambique and Tanzania, where prevalence rates among adults aged 15-49 are 10.6% and 3.2% respectively, DKT operates social franchise programs that, in addition to offering a variety of short- and long-term contraceptives, also provide STI and HIV testing services. DKT’s community mobilization efforts and affordable prices are often factors that influence clients to visit a clinic for the first time.
DKT Myanmar sells its first emergency contraception
DKT Myanmar sells its first order of Lydia emergency contraceptives to a pharmacist in Yangon.
DKT is pleased to announce the inaugural sales of its first Lydia brand emergency contraceptive pill made by a DKT saleswoman in Myanmar. DKT Myanmar has been operating since 2014 and also sells two Lydia-branded oral contraceptive variants (Lydia Rosa and Lydia Clair), Lydia IUDs, and Kiss and Kiss MOJO condoms.
DKT in the News
In March, DKT President Chris Purdy spoke about the Zika Virus and contraception on The Kathryn Zox show. DKT’s programs in Mexico and Brazil are donating contraceptives to help women prevent unwanted pregnancies in the wake of the Zika virus. The recorded show is available online here.
In addition, DKT’s use of low-tech approaches in resource poor settings like Bihar was featured in Humanosphere. The article can be found here.
DKT’s new white paper “No Easy Place to Do Family Planning” provides an in-depth picture of how DKT Pakistan is revolutionizing family planning in that country. With intractable cultural, geographic, and infrastructural barriers impeding access to family planning, the white paper explains how DKT is creatively addressing these issues. The full white paper is available here.