IT Awards 2022

11 | IT Awards 2022 Operating across London and Luton, but also with African branches in Ghana, Uganda, and Kenya, Actionplus Foundation has been on a mission for 25 years to combat stigma and prejudice against those with HIV, which are barriers against prevention, and help those who have the infection. Fred found that these prejudiced attitudes and behaviours were even being practiced in the church and that’s when he moved to intervene. The church plays a central role in the lives of many African communities, and that is where cases of HIV are particularly high because of ignorance. These communities look towards pastors and church elders for guidance and support, but unfortunately, at the time, the vast majority of pastors were ignorant about HIV due to their lack of knowledge about the disease. Therefore, Fred’s main aim with Actionplus was to find a way of breaking this stigma by educating and raising awareness. With the robust intervention of Actionplus’ ‘Take Action Now’ campaign, a breakthrough was achieved. Alas, the organisation found itself struggling when it came to funding, because it lacked a track record and had no tangible evidence that a difference could be made with its campaign. Many other organisations who were campaigning for the same cause had managed to attract the funding instead, therefore declaring Actionplus’ mission impossible. Fred didn’t let this stop him, though. For a long time, he had seen the strong potential in the use of IT. Before the IT industry’s exponential growth to become what it is today, he saw the opportunities it could bring industries around the world, and he bought into it. Thus, he created a website called Click To View (www., or C2V, to create a communication bridge between Actionplus and funders so they could work together to fund projects. Click To View means that funders don’t need to travel across the world to see the work the organisation is doing with their money. It can all be communicated virtually and enables them to easily engage in the project. Of course, many other organisations followed suit when the pandemic hit and switched to virtual operations. But Fred had got ahead and had already created a digital system for Actionplus, which was not only for communication purposes, but also a platform to showcase the impact of the project, credibility, track record, commitment, successes, and achievements. As a result of its digitisation, Actionplus has grown by 75% across the countries and regions in which it works. It manages to reach out to many service users online and through telephone, and virtual activities enable it to engage with clients and partners through Zoom, WhatsApp, and other social media platforms. These platforms also Jun22525 Best IT-Enabled Health Service NGO 2022 enable the organising of conferences, training, and follow-ups with ease. Now, Actionplus is making a big difference around the world with its HIV campaign, and it continues to receive recognition for its outstanding work that is changing and saving lives. Fred says, “This award showcases our continued strength and commitment to our mission and we hope to attract more support from the general public around the world, to save more lives from the HIV pandemic. Also, we are helping UNAID to achieve their target of ending HIV by the year 2030.” Company: Actionplus Foundation Contact: Fred Annin Email: Website: Actionplus Foundation is a Christian non-governmental organisation founded by Fred Annin in London in 1997, with the main focus of campaigning against HIV stigma and prejudice, and supporting people living with HIV. With this being the second year in a row that the organisation has seen awards success with SME News magazine, we are this time praising it for its digital transformation, which has enhanced its ability to spread its message and help people.