Activities at Kiambiu community slum were brought to a halt for some hours as attention was focused on the community football field where an extra ordinary football showdown pitting world’s most popular sports playing against world’s most common enemy.16 teams comprising of girls from different parts of Nairobi were armed with their football gears ready to play against each other but score against team HIV. The camaraderie of the teams and their quest in scoring against HIV was perfected by not only getting points for winning or drawing in their matches ,but also for participating in the Skillz Kenya activities as well as visiting VCT for HIV testing,TB screening and other services that added extra bonus points to their respective teams.
Off The Pitch Goals
Community members of Kiambiu and its environs were not only entertained by watching team football playing against team HIV, but they also took part supporting and rallying behind team football playing against team HIV.They also had an opportunity of scoring off the pitch by visiting VCT tents to know their HIV status and donating their bonus points to their respective favorite teams. For the first time ever, VAP were putting their new testing tools into work and a total of 181 girls and young women majority of them being first time testers were tested including community members who also benefited from the voluntary medical male circumcision services.Despite Kiambiu community being regarded as a high rising house hold name and a hub for producing best young footballers in the larger Kamukunji constituency, VAP was in the business of doubling up these skills to make Kiambiu football fraternity and the community as a whole to be well known in the attack and prevention of HIV both on and off the field.
With support from Egmont Trust, VAP is collaborating with Trust for Indigenous culture and health TICAH an organization that focuses on AIDS and traditional medicine, sexuality and gender, food and art activism for a peer evaluation exercise. The evaluation process that kicked off on 26th March will be spent in ways such as: attachments where Ticah’s personnel from the monitoring and evaluation team will spend time evaluating, collaborating, and analyzing strategies and techniques being implemented by VAP as they gain insight and understanding of specific organizational and programmatic practices. Learning Assessment: reports, presentations and discussions from both organizations following the attachment regarding site visits to ensure comprehensive understanding and peer evaluation across the organizations. Follow Up: to ensures lessons learned are being practiced and implemented.VAP will be seeking to achieve the following indicators: a) Increased new leaders in the fight against HIV, b. Increased HIV prevention knowledge.c) Increased collective efficiency to defeat,d. Reduced belief in HIV/AIDS myth, e). HIV testing during tournaments) Prevention and reduction of multiple concurrent partners, and cross generational sex.After the conclusion of the external evaluation, Ticah’s representatives will share out VAP’s program experiences, challenges and successes with VAP‘s staff, coaches, and volunteers.VAP will eventually collaborate on how best to utilize the evaluation exercise report to build and strengthen its programs, monitoring and evaluation systems for positive results.Similarly,VAP will do the same to Ticah’s programs once they conclude with VAP.
VAP joins GYSD Community Partner Program
The world’s challenges are complex and young people have the knowledge, creativity, compassion, and commitment to be a part of the solutions. Issues like, health, Poverty, hunger, gender equality, unemployment, primary education, and climate change are among the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that have to be addressed in the current society. The partnership of VAP and Global Youth Service Day, GYSD will boost and create an avenue for youth to address these MDGs through their GYSD events. As its core responsibility of continuing to activate, educate and mentor young people with the opportunities and support they need to meet these challenges, VAP is looking forward to leverage its participation in GYSD to create new networking opportunities with other like-minded organizations from around the world and having its program participants showcase the organization’s activities and events on the GYSD interactive map.GYSD is celebrated annually and this year’s celebrations will occur on 17th April 2015.
ISA Visits VAP
Members of International Sports Alliance (ISA) which partners with Kenya sports Development Program KSDP a sports network that affiliates VAP had an opportunity of visiting VAP offices, meeting with the staff, and coaches. The meeting that lasted for two hours included an interactive session with the staff, coaches and program beneficiaries as well as getting a whole profile of VAP.ISA representatives have been visiting various sports organizations within Nairobi that are affiliated with KSDP for the purposes of getting a firsthand experience of these organizations and the work that they do. VAP has been an active member of KSDP through networking, learning and exchanging knowledge with other like-minded organizations that are using sports as a catalyst for social impact
It’s a norm for all Skillz coaches to conduct a ‘contract’ signing process with all new Skillz Kenya participants as a show of participants committing themselves fully into the entire program and making sure to respect each other’s opinion and suggestions during the program. Usually this is regarded as the first contract encounter with the young kids that brings joy and excitement as majority of them put their first signatures on practice. The contract entails three areas: Respect-commitment of coaches and participants to be polite, listen while either of them is speaking as well as respect someone’s opinion. Participate-coaches and participants to attend each practice, taking part in the Skillz Kenya activity and have fun. Lead-coaches and participants to be role models of healthy choices and behaviours, give praise and advice to others as well as share what they have learned in Skillz Kenya with others.Skillz Kenya contract is very important to establish a safe and unique learning environment.
With the new year already with us and with all systems go! VAP embarked on conducting a 5 day training of coaches’ course where 31 coaches attended. Majority of coaches being former graduates of VAP’s programs drawn from VAP football club, and other schools were taken through the nuts and bolts of how VAP operates its programs. The coaches were trained on delivering all sessions of both HIV Skillz Mtaani (targeting 15-22 years old) and Skillz Mabeste(targeting 9-14 years old) including teach back sessions. The newly energetic and fully charged crop of coaches will be leaving no stone unturned in their quest of changing the lives of many youth ahead of them by delivering programs in various schools and community centres around Nairobi. .”Am glad to be in a position of giving back to the society what was given to me.” Said 19 years old Ayoti former graduate of Mrembo and Skillz Kenya program
VAP Attends KSDP Workshop
VAP was amongst a group of 15 organizations that are using sports to empower young people that attended a one day workshop organized by seeds of peace under the auspices of Kenya Sports Development Program (KSDP). The workshop discussed among other things on how to strengthen and package KSDP as well as actively engaging organizations affiliated to KSDP and stir them to exchange knowledge and network for the purposes of empowering their respective young people that they are working with and the community as a whole. Organizations were divided into various thematic areas of their interest including: Livelihood and sustainability, peace and coexistence, Health and Education, etc.VAP joined the livelihood and sustainability group to learn and network with other organizations that are practicing the same in order to strengthen its Mrembo salon vocational training and the coming soon catering department where its young people are involved in
To celebrate World Aids day VAP organized its annual 6th Kick N' Test VCT and TB screening tournament on December 1st 2014. A group of forty teams a mixture of young boys and girls from all the walks of Nairobi had their footmarks leading to Jericho community field in readiness to have fun, create peace as they battle HIV and TB.The flavor of the tournament was that teams were not only getting points for winning or drawing matches, but also for participating in the Skillz Kenya activities as well as visiting VCT tents for HIV testing,TB screening and other services that actually added them an extra bonus point to their respective teams. Fans and community members too were not spared as they too had an opportunity to access VCT services and donate their extra bonus points to teams of their choice..
Playing Off The Field
A total of 400 participants had an opportunity to access VCT services from Edarp VAP’s VCT service providers who had pitched tents besides the playing field. Participants had to scramble and line up for VCT services as these extra points were very crucial and important to their teams in terms of boosting their overall points. Being on a world’s Aids day, there was a shortage of testing kits all over the country and this affected the testing targets of VAP. During this tournament that also included a mixture of boys and girls in one particular team, football3 methodogy was also incorporated whereby boys and girls in each team had equal time to discuss before and after the match, and learnt how to solve issues themselves and build consensus, the approach has proven particularly useful to VAP in achieving its core aim of transmitting and reinforcing important messages on health issues such as HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. With health as the starting point, VAP uses its football3 sessions to address other topics such as gender equality, social inclusion, peace building and youth leadership.
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