As we rolled into 2011, it was a celebration of a new year and a new decade. At the same time our hearts remained so connected with the daily struggles, little joys and the profound hope that we could see the in faces and lives of children living with HIV and AIDS and their families. In the last four years of our existence, Rozaria Memorial Trust had established itself as a community centred organisation providing much needed services related to HIV treatment, care and support, most in Zimbabwe.
A new year demanded a deeper commitment from us, to serve our communities and to impact lives. RMT will expend its outreach in 2011 to cover almost 40 villages in Murewa, from the current 30. We seek to have full coverage of ward 17, and also reach out to schools like Chipinda, in Murewa. This way, we are able to maintain our approach that we provide household to household information, and reach the unreachable child, that woman or man living with HIV who may not be in any support group nor maybe accessing any health care services.
Secondly, we seek to introduce a new programme for HIV positive young people who are out of school or in transition on completion of secondary education. We are adapting to the reality of our activities, where we recognise that we are not serving some of those HIV positive children who dropped out of school or unable to continue. For those who have just completed secondary education, we are launching a short-term internship programme, that equips them with living in an external environment not sheltered by either the family the school or the community. We will continue to have a major outreach to children in the rural areas, living in extreme poverty and with minimum possibilities in their lives.
Many people generously continue to support our work. American Jewish World Service (AJWS) and AVERT have remained with us for the last few years and have continued to build our capacity to be an effective service, social justice and advocacy organisation. We owe it to many friends, who stood with us as we entered the Global Open Challenge hosted by Global Giving Foundation; that secured us a permanent spot on their on-line giving platform. More than 60 people gave and today we have received over $6,000 for our project on Access to Treatment for HIV Positive Children. It is such generosity that continue to inspire and encourage us, as we impact families and communities. Other organisations like Global Fund for Women; Urgent Action Fund-Africa; SAFAIDS, Huairou Commission; African Women and Child Features, UN Women –Zimbabwe Office, and many others have all been either midwives to our work, accompanier, friends and advisers and we remain so grateful.
We are convinced that in our social justice work, we should combine service provision, capacity building and advocacy. Therefore as a Trust we will continue to build and strengthen our partnerships at all levels, in Murewa District, at the national level in Zimbabwe as well as in regional and global forums. It’s crucial that the rights of women and children are protected. They live a life free of violence; free of poverty and disease and where they can opportunities for livelihoods and entrepreneurship.
6 January, 2011
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