Zimbabwe: Direct Relief's programme activities update Mar 2006
Shipment Number: 4831
Shipment Date: 3/1/2006
Zimbabwe is an extremely poor country in sub-Saharan Africa with a life expectancy of only 37 years due in large part to the high HIV/AIDS prevalence rate. In Zimbabwe, nearly 1/3 of adults -- and 250,000 children -- are HIV positive, and in a country with a total population of 12 million, there are an estimated one million AIDS orphans. The J.F. Kapnek Charitable Trust is a U.S.-based non-profit devoted to improving health in Southern Africa. By 2004, their program to prevent mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV had expanded to over sixty clinical sites around the country and provided PMTCT resources to over 15,000 women. One thousand-two hundred nurses, midwives and community health workers have received training in breast & infant feeding, HIV rapid testing, understanding PMTCT, and counseling sensitization. The Trust has expanded its care for orphans and vulnerable children by setting up community-based pre-schools and the Vimbainesu Children's Home that cares for more than 50 children, as well as other efforts that seek to strengthen communities. In support of their efforts to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS, Direct Relief provided the antibiotic Septra, used to treat HIV/AIDS opportunistic infections, prenatal and infant vitamins, and personal care products.