The Safeguarding and Sustainable Livelihoods pillar continue to reach out to Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC), adolescents, youth and their families in Zimbabwe with programmes that seek to mitigate the impact of HIV and AIDS by providing a comprehensive and sustainable continuum of services. The pillar is implementing five-year-long programs (2022-2027), the Sustaining Prevention, Increasing Access to Care and Empowerment for Orphans and Vulnerable Children (SPACE for OVC) and the DREAMS- Support, Maintain, Advocate, reduce Risk and Transform (SMART) Girls which are follow on programs after the CHILDREN TARIRO (2015-2022) and DREAMS initiative (2016-2022).
For the next five years, SPACE for OVC will work in high HIV-burden districts, to help communities and local institutions provide a comprehensive set of services to improve the health, nutrition, and psycho-social well-being of HIV-affected and infected children. It will ensure that these children can access HIV prevention, care, and treatment services, as well as prevention of and response to gender-based violence. Furthermore, it will deliver entrepreneurship, employability, and vocational training to caregivers of orphans and vulnerable children to improve families’ economic stability.
SPACE for OVC Objectives:
The Children Tariro Program (2015- 2022)
FACT’s Children Tariro (CT) project which was implemented in 2015 and came to an end in September 2022 was a program which sought to mitigate the impact of HIV and AIDS on Zimbabwe’s children by enhancing care and support services for OVC. The CT project provides a critical continuum of care and is earmarked to contribute to epidemic control through socioeconomic interventions that reduce vulnerability to HIV and AIDS. It strategically complemented the four pillars of the National Action Plan for Orphans and Vulnerable Children which seeks to strengthen children, their families and the government to provide comprehensive care and a supportive environment for children. Started in 2015, the CT program was funded by The U.S President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The program was implemented in five districts of Manicaland Province and one district of Masvingo Province targeting OVC and their families as tabulated below;
In 2015, the CT program surpassed its annual target of 119 000 OVC and their households, reaching 124 815OVC and their families. In 2016, the program enjoyed surpassing the set target of 126 347, reaching out to 136 966 children and their families. 134 417 were reached through the Country Operational Plan (COP) which is the main CT project and 2 549 were reached through the DREAMS initiative. This reach was against a target of 126 347, (12 004 for CT and 5 343 for DREAMS). The project managed to surpass its target because of the improved data collection system in which community cadres managed to report many of the children who had received services using the Country Operation Plan and DREAMS funds. CT focused on the following interventions:
• Health assessments
• Adolescents Sexual and Reproductive Health targeting in and out of school adolescents
• Child protection
• GBV awareness
• Psychosocial support
• Education assistance
How Children Tariro worked?
FACT Children Tariro OVC program employs a systemic approach which builds on the Department of Child Welfare and Protection Services (DPWPS) strategy and FACT’s integrated Community Care of OVC model of offering wrap-around services to children and their families.
Coverage: Manicaland Province (Makoni, Mutasa, Mutare, Nyanga, Chipinge & Buhera (partnering with Rujeko) and Masvingo Province (partnering with Regai Dzive Shiri RDS.)
Services we offered.
Children Tariro provided direct services to the child through a holistic approach to ensure that children are healthy, safe, schooled, and in stable environments. Therefore, interventions focus on Case Management, Access to Health/ HIV services, Safety, Protection, Economic Strengthening and Access to Education (ECD, Primary and Secondary.)
Households and communities were supported through economic strengthening activities and child protection structures to provide direct support to the child. Furthermore, government systems were supported and strengthened to provide adequate services required by children for improved well-being. At all these service points, cross-cutting issues of child and adult participation, disability, case management and gender were mainstreamed.