To strengthen linkages and referral systems between community and government service providers, the Bantwana Initiative was developed by World Education Initiative (WEI) and is an initiative of WEI and John Snow, Inc. The program prides itself on “innovative models of care that are based on existing community structures and address children’s comprehensive needs.” The program is supporting vulnerable children and families in Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, and in Zimbabwe.
More than a symbolic action, really listening to children about their needs helps shape decision-making in support of orphans and vulnerable children in Zimbabwe. Susan Kajura, director of the Children First program there shares some small scale actions yielding big positive results.
Finally the global community has seen the importance of involving the family & community in the fight against HIV & AIDS. After a number of research studies and project implementations, we have finally realized that HIV is a family issue, and the right way to minimize the effects of the epidemic is to utilize the power of family and community support–the closest source of support for people affected by HIV.
Main messages from the CCABA (Coalition on Children Affected by AIDS) – a two day symposium with most of the major players in the OVC sector participating.
You must understand basic human needs when you’re talking about HIV; for example, you can’t talk to people about prevention if they don’t have something to eat today. Organizations work the same way. Look at their hierarchy of needs; they must keep money flowing, so strengthening those systems first is essential.