ZIMBABWE – Community Support Towards Child Care Protection Against Child Abuse

Date: July 27, 2018
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Kadoma is a City in Mashonaland West Province of Zimbabwe. The town has 5 City health institutions. The program on Child care started when Tsungirirai vacated in Kadoma in 2015 offering HIV and AIDS services. Training was offered and the active members of the project were offered bicycles to be able to move around the community to assist those in need.

When the committee continued working, it picked a number of issues concerning children that were suffering directly or indirectly from the HIV and AIDS pandemic. The project is now the front line carders in the identification of child protection services and facilitating appropriate reveals of children requiring child protection services to the department of social welfare. There is an alliance that include Kadoma City, Tsungirirai Group, Department of social Welfare and Ministry of Education Sports Art and Culture, Ministry of Home Affairs PLHIV and Ministry of Health and Child Care.

The aim of this project is to mitigate the suffering of children from the impact of HIV and AIDS and to identify all children directly or indirectly affected by HIV and AIDS. It also opts to ensure that children are not required or permitted to form work or services that places at risk the children’s wellbeing, education, physical or mental health, spiritual and moral as social development.  To improve quality of life of the children and protect children from exploitation labour practices.

The council is a gender centre of excellence. The council has been working closely with Gender Links, the national secretariat of the alliance in developing awareness policies and implementing activities that contribute to fulfilment of the SADC protocol on gender equality.

The project has reached direct beneficiaries with a total of 9900 and indirect participants of about 1150. The government of Zimbabwe has allocated $9 277 026 to support this project.

Of the main challenges, shortage of resources, poor male participation and lack of participation of guardians became quite visible. However, since other partners became involved the funds flooded in to boost the project. Men were continued to be educated and also the guardians kept on being persuaded until they gave in.

In daily planned activities routine visits are done to check on the welfare of the children, support the children and have necessary communication skills. Every last Saturdays of each month the council hold meetings to evaluate the projects progress or share challenges with other wards.

Most women in the community have been empowered at a higher level. There are now introducing different activities on their own to help their families, For example floor polish making. Women are looking forward to expand the project so as to ensure that more profits are realised. The council held awareness campaigns in the community, dramas and introduced games in order for them to relieve their minds, for instance female soccer tournaments.

Hilda Phiri says, “Because the child care committee in ward 2 raise funds on its own to help children we had to start a floor polish making project.” Most men in the community have a positive mind set. In the past years they thought the work was for women only. The inception of this project reduce of abused and neglected children. They attended many seminars and workshops which were meant to equip them so that they can help the community on the importance of helping those in need.

Both men and women in the community are taking part in identifying and helping those children in need. Men are participating in all meetings and they are also taking part in gender issues. Chipo Chitsungo a community member is taking care of Mrs Matole who is mentally disturbed.

Community service needs committed people to yield results. Alternative means of finding the case must be used like street education and stories. After the campaigns, everyone in the community should have necessary communication skills on how to communicate with children. When dealing with children coordination of activities is critical to avoid duplication.



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