Documenting an epidemic: University of Cape Town Library builds HIV/AIDS video archive
More than 5.5 million people in South Africa are afflicted with HIV or AIDS. The epidemic has prompted a media group and a university library to pool their resources to document and preserve the experiences of those who are suffering and those who have battled a government that has at times refused to acknowledge the epidemic. Since 1998, the Community Media Trust has shot 3,000 hours of video footage chronicling the social and political aspects of the AIDS epidemic in South Africa. With a $75,000 grant from the Elsevier Foundation, the University of Cape Town Libraries (UTC) has launched a unique archival project to safeguard and make accessible a decade of “primary source” material.