During the past 28 months Ndola Nutrition Organisation in partnership with GlobalGiving have been implementing a project aimed at increasing the capacities of HIV+ adolescents and young mothers to mitigate the challenges of self-stigma that exacerbate the feeling of self worthlessness, shame and self-blame because of being HIV+; resulting into emotional distress and negative impacts on access to HIV health services, adherence to ART and overall quality of life at individual, family and community levels
2. PROJECT CONTEXT/RATIONALE
Self-stigma on adolescents has had an overwhelming negative impact on their wellbeing. For HIV adolescents, self-stigma has become an ingredient for them to engage in illicit activities such as drug abuse, excessive beer drinking, unsafe sex and smoking of marijuana. The Drug enforcement Commission of Zambia (2020) attests to this fact and states that, self-stigma among HIV adolescents contributes to approximately 48% of drug abuse and mental health cases in the Copperbelt region alone.
3. PROJECT STRATEGY
To address the problems stated above immediate interventions were needed and as such Ndola Nutrition Organization partnered with GlobalGiving to raise the needed resources to undertake the project.
The planned interventions aimed at:
-Providing regular psychosocial counselling through trained psychosocial counsellors, peer to peer support, safe space discussions etc. ----Providing information and awareness rising on the dangers of self-stigma using ICT (Information Communication Technology) tools and offline materials. The ICT tools will be installed with animated videos providing information/awareness in local languages.
4. PROJECT OBJECTIVE
To strengthen the capacity of HIV+ adolescents and young mothers to mitigate the challenges of self-stigma that exacerbate the feeling of self worthlessness, shame and self-blame because of being HIV+ in Luanshya District of the Copper belt Province of Zambia reaching 143 beneficiaries by December 2021.
5. PROGRESS TOWARDS ACHIEVEMENTS PROGRAM STRATEGIES
The project is conducting its programming through: -Small group discussion -Household hold based dialogues - Online charts and individual based engagements 6. PROJECT IMPACT The project has so far engaged and dialogue with 235 beneficiaries at individual, household and community level against the target of 143 beneficiaries.