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Photo: Merete Taksdal

STPA – Support TB Preventive Action

STPA, Support TB Preventive Action, is a voluntary humanitarian organisation that works with fighting tuberculosis in Sudan through public education and reducing the stigma. They would also like to ensure that patients receive their rightful access to treatment and information. STPA was formerly known as the Sudanese TB Patient Association.

Tuberculosis patients shall be given better knowledge and opportunities to master their own disease in order to get well, and they shall continue to be recognised members of the local community.

Support TB Preventive Action (STPA) is represented in all of Sudan’s 18 states, and three new branches were established after the division of Sudan and south Sudan in 2011.

STPA has its own drama group that travels around with a touring theatre group and has also recorded informational films that are broadcast on local and national television.

Photo of Handai Hussein, Director of STPAHandai Hussein, Director of STPA, shows the brochures they use for meetings with tuberculosis sufferers and for prevention.

Democratic organisation

The STPA is democratically organised with a board, annual general meetings, by-laws, plans of action, etc. The partnership started when STPA was part of the National Tuberculosis Programme (NTP), which also has a partnership with LHL International.

Each local organisation has its own administration and board, and their efforts are organised by the voluntary members. The local organisations have their own rules and objectives. They must mobilise their own financial resources and find alliance partners in their own state. Since Sudan is a federal system with individual states, the local organisations must be registered as a separate organisation in their own state.

More than 10,000 volunteers are registered as members of the STPA. The organisation also has a strategic partnership with other voluntary organisations, so that they can do tuberculosis work through their partners. These partners work in particular with public education and the reduction of stigma through their members.

Sudan has many humanitarian challenges, with war and conflict, internally displaced persons and a great deal of poverty. Therefore, there are major differences between the various states and in how great the influence and capacity of STPA is.

Women’s rights

STPA focuses strongly on human rights and the rights of women. They work with income-generating initiatives in order to improve the situation of poor tuberculosis patients, and they use health communication as a method in all work.