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Botswana Alcohol Aids Project

Alcohol and HIV/AIDS
Youth at High Risk
Alcohol, Violence and Agression
ALCOHOL'S Harmful Effects
Progressive Symptoms of Alcoholism
Brain Damage
AA Meetings
12 Step Recovery
Substance Abuse in Botswana
Drug Free Workplace
POT/DAGGA Harmful Effects
INHALANTS - Harmful Effects
CIGARETTES - Harmful Effects
ECSTACY - Harmful Effects
MacDonald Tolerance Graph
Co Dependency - Family Counseling
Counter Dependency
12 Steps to Emotional Maturity
About Us
Under Construction
Quiz for Religious Addiction
Spiritual Abuse
Christian CoDependency
Serenity Prayer - FUll Text

Welcome to this site which focuses upon the country of Botswana and the issue of Alcohol. Alcohol has a documented connection with the continuation of the AIDS pandemic in Botswana and its overall detrimental effect upon the citizens of Botswana.

I hope that you find something useful among the wealth of information about HIV/AIDS, Alcohol and Other Drugs, TB, Codependency, Spiritual Issues, etc.

We filed application in 2002 with the Government to become a Registered Non-Governmental Organization. Essentially that application has been ignored so we continue to operate with our own funds as a private entity. Our services are provided to the Country and Citizens of Botswana free of charge as a Public Service.

I came to Botswana as a volunteer. Since marrying my wife, Dr. Samba Nyirenda MacDonald in 2004, my official status became as her dependent. I am not employed and draw no salary. I am retired in the USA and my personal income is derived from my retirement funds.

We do a lot with a little. Because the issues of Alcohol and HIV/AIDS are so entwined and are so destructive that which we are able to do to help is limited by resources.

What is our motivation? I am a recovering Alcoholic. After 22 years of destructive drinking and associated lifestyle I found myself locked in a padded cell and in a straight jacket. While there I was visited by a man who began to tell me of his Alcoholism and subsequent recovery. He gave me hope. For the first time in many years I felt that perhaps I too could recover and get out of this Alcohol trap that had destroyed a good part of my life.

That man, my friend Godfrey was an Addiction Specialist and he facilitated my release from the cell and entry into Gateway Rehabilitation Center in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania. This all occurred in January of 1975. Since Jan. 3, 1975 when I was admitted to the padded cell until January 3, 2006 I have not had a drink of alcohol. That's 31 years of continuous sobriety. Obviously my life has changed and improved dramatically.

My 31 years of a new life free from alcohol and other drugs has been devoted to acquiring the education and training to perform as an expert - an Addiction Specialist. My education also encompassed Psychology and the combination and practice of the two specialties provides me with a broad base of expertise to be a help to people in trouble. Because I was helped to recover I felt that my life needed to be devoted to the same end; helping people in trouble with no regard of their ability to pay.

I do hope that we can be of help to you.

We are engaged in the war against HIV/AIDS which is destroying Botswana as well as Sub Saharan Africa.

Alcohol use and other Substance Abuse is identified as one of the major factors causing the continued spread of HIV/AIDS in Botswana.

The pandemic continues to spread in spite of 10+ years of Government spending and committment to educating about HIV/AIDS and in providing testing and treatment to the citizens of Botswana.

In Botswana, for example, life expectancy is only 39 years, while it would have been 72, if it were not for AIDS. This means that the majority of Batswana on average, will live 30 years less than they would have if not for the AIDS pandemic.

Botswana's infection rate of 37.3% of pregnant women extrapolates into an overall infection rate of approximately 30% and shows no sign of abating. The Central Statistics Office of the Botswana Government recently released statistics from a National Survey it conducted which, they say, indicates an HIV rate of 17.1%. Little is known about the methodology and ethical structure of the CSO Survey so, for the moment we will continue to report the Sero Prevalence rate as approximately 30%. The death rate in Botswana now exceeds the birth rate. Without significant nationwide behavioral change the Country of Botswana is on a long march to extinction.

We are Addiction and Recovery Specialists as well as HIV/AIDS and TB Researchers.

Alcohol use in Botswana is clearly linked, by its negative impact on behavior, to the continued spread of HIV/AIDS.

By reducing Alcohol use and abuse we hope to help slow the march to extinction to a crawl.


The Botswana Alcohol/Aids Project (BAAP) has been created in recognition that Alcohol and Other Drug Use and Abuse in Botswana contributes significantly to the spread of Aids.

Being under the influence of Alcohol or Other mood/mind altering Drugs causes a person to lose the ability to exercise self-control, make good choices, and, most particularly, lessens the likelihood of practicing safe sex.

Alcohol use is also identified as a root cause of persons taking ARV and/or TB medications not following the prescribed treatment regimine.

Youth, HIV/AIDS and Alcohol


This father and son are returning from gathering firewood for heating and cooking. They will keep some and bundle and sell the rest. The collection and sale of firewood is a staple cash business. The volume of wood being used is beginning to concern environmentalists. A rural resident must now travel so far to get to the bush that individuals collecting wood is not practical. Use of 4x4s and donkey carts by collectors who bundle it and sell to roadside vendors who in turn sell to the public is the way this business operates.

The economy of Botswana rests solely upon the back of the diamond mines. Sale of huge numbers of industrial grade diamonds provides the Government with significant income but leaves the average citizen without access to income though the usual route - working for it. Unfortunately, the 2nd largest industry in number of people earning a living is the Alcohol Industry. That fact gives the Alcohol Industry great lobbying leverage annd helps them control legislation that they feel threatens the profits of the Alcohol Industry. There is little diversification or development of industry. Many citizen's are restricted from access to land because of belonging to the wrong tribe and are not able to earn a living from agriculture or cattle. 40% of the citizens live in poverty (less than $1.00 US per day). A high percentage are unemployed and many of those who are counted as 'employed' live in poverty because of extremely low wages and the fact that their "employment" is, in reality, day work. Many counted by the Government as 'employed' do not hold a recognized position but are forced to seek some 'piece work' on a day by day basis.


Many women - widowed by the HIV/AIDS pandemic or single with children, earn their living as street vendors. These vendors have set up shop at the Francistown Bus & Taxi Rank.

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Please get in touch to offer comments and join our emailing list. Use the form on the 'Contact Us' page.

Copyright 2004, Botswana Alcohol Aids Project - Jim MacDonald Webmaster. Contact Jim at