People living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIVs) group, Muungano, is supporting 10 infected and affected children with HIV/AIDS in Ludewa district, Njombe region.
Muungano is one of PLHIV groups supported by TUNAJALI Program formed to improve PLHIVs’ household income, emotional and psycho-social support, stigma reduction supporting each other as well as orphans and vulnerable children.
“We know that just like any other child, orphans need education. We therefore saw the importance of taking these orphaned children to school so as to give them one of the basic needs, education, which is very key for their future,” said Muungano’s chairman.
Being orphaned the children had no money to take care of their uniforms and other important things like books, exercise books, pens and so Muungano members discussed this issue and decided to raise some money which could be used to support orphans and vulnerable children studying at Lumumba secondary school.
Before Muungano’s support, the orphans used to do casual labour so as so earn some money for their living and school needs. “I used to work on people’s farms so that I get some money for my basic needs,” says Alphonce who lost his parents in 2003.
Gabriel, another orphan, said, “I used to work for people but what they paid me was peanuts. All the same I used the money to buy food to be shared with my siblings.”
Through Savings and Internal Lending Community (SILC), TUNAJALI Program plays a key role to mobilize PLHIV support groups through Home Based Care and provides them with basic financial education to manage them. Through these groups, PLHIVs mobilize funds to start up and expand businesses, improve food security, acquire assets and to support orphans and vulnerable children.
This group of 35 members 24 of them being females was formed in November 2011 at Mbwila village, Luana ward.