The role of horizontal philanthropy in mitigating the impacts of HIV/AIDS in rural areas : a case study of Mathulini Rural Area.
This Masters dissertation documents the results of a qualitative research study on how horizontal giving lessens the impacts of HIV/AIDS in the rural Mathulini area of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. The main objective of this research study was to understand the role and importance of horizontal philanthropy (giving occurring amongst families, friends and within communities) in mitigating the impact of HIV/AIDS in a rural community. The study was conducted in the Mathulini rural area of KwaZulu-Natal, with a focus on a community based organisation, the Mathulini Women’s Group. The thesis uses the theory of horizontal philanthropy to investigate the role of philanthropy in rural areas, especially towards reducing HIV/AIDS impacts within these communities. In this research an understanding of horizontal philanthropy from a South African perspective was first put forward. Using participant observation and interview research methods, the study concludes that giving and philanthropy form a large part of South African tradition and culture, and also impact positively on the country’s citizens. Based on an understanding of horizontal philanthropy, the study then reflects the way in which people from poor and marginalised settings engage in horizontal philanthropy as means of helping each other on a daily basis. It highlights the role of horizontal philanthropy in mitigating the impact of HIV/AIDS within the rural communities. This study contributes to the nascent literature on African indigenous philanthropies.