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The contribution of grassroots groups in HIV/AIDS Prevention and care in Kilimanjaro region, Tanzania, the case of KIWAKKUKI . By Dafrosa Kokulingilila Itemba, Executive Coordinator of KIWAKKUKI Tanzania. A paper presented in Bergen, 10 th January 2007. Happy 60th Birthday Gro Lie!.
By Dafrosa Kokulingilila Itemba, Executive Coordinator of KIWAKKUKI Tanzania.
A paper presented in Bergen, 10th January 2007
This presentation is dedicated to Professor Gro Th Lie for her everlasting technicalSupport, Love and for her keeping the KIWAKKUKI Candle burning !
The main beneficiaries of KIWAKKUKI include the PLHIV who are open and those not open about their sero status and OVC. Both groups have been marginalized by the epidemic and also by the policies and systems which deprive them access to service, resources allocation locally ,nationally and internationally. Another disadvantaged group is that of youth, who are reported as highly vulnerable in the Tanzania’s National AIDS Control Programme Reports and elsewhere in Sub-Saharan Africa.
After all these years of hard work and enormous challenges, KIWAKKUKI has emerged as a leading NGO in integrating the HIV/AIDS response in Tanzania by offering a comprehensive support through the strategies of HIV/AIDS Awareness Raising, Home Based Care, Voluntary Counselling and Testing and Orphans’ and Vulnerable Children Support.
KIWAKKUKI does not work in isolation but operates as per the Multi sectoral priorities of the Tanzanian government. What we do is a contribution to the national efforts in HIV/AIDS prevention, support and care.
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Over 5,214 members
11 elected members with district representatives and 2 PLHAs
BOARD OF TRUSTEES
HOD HEALTH EDUCATION
KIWAKKUKI District Council
ASST. HOD VCT
HIRED SECURITY GUARDS
Our partnership with Norway started with Professor Gro Lie’s training of our initial counselors in 1991 , These multiplied by training hundreds of more counsellors. then we were introduced to Kvinnefronten by Karen Maria and Chiku Ali in 1997, and then to FOKUS and NORAD, Bergen College in 1998, School For All in 2003, Lovisenberg Diakonale, Hoyskole and many friends.
MAP OF KILIMANJARO SHOWING KIWAKKUKI GRASSROOTS GROUPS 2006
District No of Groups Total membership No. of Wards in Total No of wards where
Moshi Municipal 13 426 15 12
Moshi Rural West 22 1507 31 12
Moshi Rural East 25 13
Hai 36 1106 14 11
Rombo 16 427 20 12
Mwanga 19 634 16 7
Same 28 964 24 24
Total 159 5,064 120 91
Grassroots capacity has been strengthened through skills building in the areas of HIV/ and AIDS prevention, care and support. The bottom line is for these groups to own and participate in HIV/AIDS prevention, policy implementation and open dialogues on existing policies. KIWAKKUKI grassroots also have been networking and building coalitions with other key players like Faith based Organisations, the private sector and the government.
Grassroots groups are also empowered to facilitate the achievement of important health and social development goals including advocacy for policies that are pro poor like the cost effective free VCT food and offering income security, nutrition and soft loans to PLHA’s. KIWAKKUKI’s major policy undertaking is to increase access to appropriate HIV/AIDS knowledge, greater involvement of PLHA’s and access to care and treatment and promotion of human rights in the HIV/AIDS era.
Making deliberate efforts not to do business as usual but to include gender sensitivity and address HIV/AIDS at the workplace in planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation. At the grassroots level, women are empowered to be assertive and try out some negotiation skills to make their position felt and their community work appreciated by men.
Women in the grassroots have learnt to follow up and evaluate the work they do in the community. They never did this before. They follow up the wellbeing of the orphans, , the micro credit projects, the bed ridden patients and they also follow up significant changes in the areas they conduct outreach education. They have learnt to keep records and present the results both orally and in writing at the monthly meetings.
IF GRASSROOTS HAVE MANAGED TO GIVE AIDS A HUMAN FACE WHAT ABOUT OTHERS?