CAPRISA celebrates South Africa’s rich and diverse cultures and traditions on Heritage day

30 September 2018

CAPRISA celebrated the rich diversity of cultures of staff and communities on Heritage Day(24 September) which is a public holiday in South Africa to promote social cohesion through an understanding and respect of the traditions, belief systems, cultural practices, cuisine and language of communities.

CAPRISA’s Vulindlela Research clinic celebrated national Heritage Day on 21 September and staff looked resplendent in traditional dress as they reflected on their personal heritage and shared traditional meals.  “Our Heritage Day celebration presented a good opportunity for colleagues to learn more about each other’s cultures, “said Dr Pete Zacharias, Director of the clinic. “It was a useful team-building event that will assist in removing cultural boundaries and changing negative perceptions around certain cultures. South Africa is a melting pot of cultures and this cultural diversity affects the way employees behave within the workplace and it is vital that each person’s culture and belief system is respected,” explained Zacharias.

CAPRISA’s research partner, the HIV Virology Lab at the National Institutes of Communicable Diseases (NICD), celebrated this year’s Heritage Day in true South African style by sharing homemade traditional dishes and dressing up for the occasion.  The CAPRISA Vaccine team celebrated Heritage Day together with 181 study participants at  CAPRISA’s eThekwini Clinical Research Site on 22 September. The programme included a performance by the Township Vocals choir from Umlazi, an address by Ivy Kaunde acting Community Liaison Officer, Vaccine Research and entertainment by  CAPRISA staff.