IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 183, 28 May 2004
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IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 183, 28 May 2004

[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]


BOTSWANA: Botswana Ministry of Health to reach more with HIV training
SWAZILAND: Innovative project cares for AIDS orphans
MOZAMBIQUE: First hospital for HIV-positive children
ZAMBIA: More than half children under five are stunted


1. Kurarama
2. SisterLove, Inc



BOTSWANA: Botswana Ministry of Health to reach more with HIV training

Botswana's ministry of health this week announced its intention to expand its existing HIV/AIDS training programme to reach more health care professionals.

"Building on the existing KITSO AIDS training programme, the plan will ensure a comprehensive, standardised and coordinated HIV/AIDS training, as well as bringing all existing and future HIV-focused training under the aegis and direction of the ministry of health, so the quality can be assured," Peter Navario, chairman of the KITSO planning committee and project co-ordinator of the Baylor-Botswana Children's Clinical Centre of Excellence, told PlusNews.

KITSO, a Tsetswana word meaning 'knowledge', stands for Knowledge, Innovation and Training Shall Overcome (HIV/AIDS). It includes the Botswana-Harvard Partnership, the Ministry of Health's AIDS/STD Unit, the African Comprehensive HIV/AIDS Partnership (ACHAP), the BOTUSA Project, the Baylor International Paediatric AIDS Initiative, the Nurses Association of Botswana and affiliated health training institutions.

One of the new courses on offer includes advanced training in paediatric HIV care, provided by leading paediatric AIDS experts from the Baylor International Paediatric AIDS Initiative.

More details

SWAZILAND: Innovative project cares for AIDS orphans

Neighbourhood Care Points (NCP) that provide a host of services to Swaziland's growing population of orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) will be expanded by 150 percent by the end of 2005 in the drought-stricken southern Shiselweni and eastern Lubombo regions, according to a recent report released by the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF).

"Neighbourhood Care Points are places for children to acquire [assistance with] their nutritional as well as emotional, educational and even spiritual needs. Importantly, they are places that allow for the socialisation of otherwise isolated children," said UNICEF country representative Alan Brody.

In conjunction with the World Food Programme, which sees to the basic nutritional needs of OVC, 198 care points have already been established across the country. Eighty of these are located in the dry lowveld regions, where a third year of drought has led to acute food shortages. Some 200 NCPs will be operational next year.

"The care points see to the needs of vulnerable children and orphans who have lost their parents to AIDS, and they bring communities into the process, which is part of our philosophy of finding grassroots solutions to social problems," said UNICEF communications director Sibusiso Mngadi.

More details

MOZAMBIQUE: First hospital for HIV-positive children

Mozambique's first hospital for HIV-positive children opened this week in the capital, Maputo, amid estimates that more than 30,000 children are born HIV-positive each year.

"The Paediatric Day Hospital will facilitate much more integrated support to children living with HIV/AIDS than up to now," said UNICEF Representative Marie-Pierre Poirier in a statement.

Estimates indicate there are currently 68,000 children under the age of five living with HIV/AIDS in Mozambique. "Over 50 percent of them die within the first year and half of the remainder do not survive the second year," Christiane Rudert, UNICEF's project officer for Nutrition and Child Health, told PlusNews.

"The treatment and the services offered at the Paediatric Day Hospital in Maputo can improve their quality of life and provide much needed support to their parents and other caretakers," Poirier noted.

More details

ZAMBIA: More than half children under five are stunted

More than half of Zambia's children aged under five are stunted - one of the highest levels in Africa, according to UN Children's Fund (UNICEF).

"The levels of child malnutrition in Zambia had showed improvement throughout the 1990s, but since 1999 have deteriorated quite significantly," UNICEF's nutrition and health officer, Claudia Hudspeth, told PlusNews on Monday.

Hudspeth, who recently conducted a survey on children in Southern Africa, attributed the increase in the levels of child malnutrition to a combination of drought and the impact of HIV/ AIDS.

"The levels of stunting in Zambia are some of the highest in Africa, with 51.9 percent of children less than 5 years of age stunted," she said. "The highest levels of stunting were recorded in the provinces of Luapula, where 63 percent of children under five are stunted; Eastern province, 64 percent; and the Southern province, where the largest humanitarian operation was focused throughout the drought, the figure was 44 percent."

More details


1. Kurarama

Kurarama is an initiative of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), aimed at responding to the HIV/AIDS crisis in the Manica Province in Mozambique. Shona is the prevalent language in this area, in which "Kurarama" means "to live". AFSC has distributed clothing, seeds, hand tools and medical supplies; constructed health and child care centres; and supported a mobile clinic for mothers and children at high risk.

2. SisterLove, Inc

The SisterLove, Inc site is home to the reproductive and sexual health and rights organisation for women, with a focus on HIV/AIDS. SisterLove collaborated with established South African AIDS service organisations for three years, providing training, technical assistance and resource development to HIV+ women and those working to combat the effects of HIV/AIDS in South Africa. Late in 2002, the focus of the Women's HIV/AIDS Resources Project (WHARP) broadened to encourage and support partnerships and collaborations between American AIDS service organisations and organisations in South Africa.


Recent AFRICA Reports
IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 195, 20 August 2004,  20/Aug/04
HIV-positive women speak out,  17/Aug/04
Sexual Offences bill raises many concerns,  13/Aug/04
IRIN PlusNews Weekly Issue 194, 13 August 2004,  13/Aug/04
Removal of generic drugs from WHO list a wake-up call,  6/Aug/04
The Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis & Malaria
International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS
The Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis & Malaria

PlusNews does not take responsibility for info in links supplied.


PlusNews is produced under the banner of RHAIN, the Southern African Regional HIV/AIDS Information Network. RHAIN's members currently include:

  • IRIN
  • Inter Press Service (IPS)
  • Health Systems Trust
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  • GTZ/Afronets

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