Poor nutrition like the majority of cross-cutting problems in the community is also a child of poverty. When a young woman does not have enough resources to finance a better life for herself such as getting a properly balanced diet, she is more vulnerable and at risk of not accessing the proper nutrition that her body needs.
Society at large needs to ensure that we look out for each other, by providing all the support necessary to attain good health among adolescent girls and young women. There is a famous proverb that states “Health is Wealth.” And for a person to retain good health, they need to make sure they take their medicine constantly and eat a correct balanced diet.
Statistics show that 1.4 million people in Tanzania are living with HIV/AIDs, where 2.2% of youth aged 15-24 are living with HIV of which 2.1% are female and 0.6% are males. Thinking that the AGYW group has the potential to grow and strengthen the country’s economy and it is expected to do much and this shows that there is a much bigger problem to address.
Her Initiative through its different interventions has been working to advance girls’ and women’s rights to overcome financial inclusion barriers and one of the biggest limitations of HIV care and treatment is poverty among PLHIV AGYW.
Fikia+ Project is a project that aims at to implement the economic empowerment of PLHIV AGYW (15 – 24 years) in the Mwanza region.
Her Initiative in partnership with ICAP Tanzania in Columbia University has prepared a financial incentive program to improve HIV retention by supporting the holistic implementation of HIV prevention, testing, care and treatment at the community and facility level in the Mwanza region in Tanzania. Dubbed the FIKIA+ Project, this new initiative aims to accelerate, expand, and improve the quality of HIV prevention, care, and treatment in order to meet UNAIDS 95-95-95 targets in intervention districts.
According to the HIV AND AIDS (PREVENTION AND CONTROL) ACT, 2008
Despite the fact that the laws of Tanzania are combating the spread of HIV/AIDS, the problem is still continuously affecting adolescent girls and young women. As part of addressing the problem, the Fikia + project deploys various initiatives including training and mentorship on economic empowerment to AGYW which will help to improve their nutrition.
Fikia + project aims to reach the Adolescent Girls and Young Women who are living with aids by creating awareness of PLHIV AGYW on digital skills on the use of digital technologies in doing business so that they can utilize the economic opportunities found within their living areas. To increase their incomes which will in turn improve their nutrition and accelerate their intake of medication and reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS in the long run.
“AGYW is a group that we are supposed to invest in as it has the potential to create income systems for themselves and other young women as well, so the fact that it is the most affected group living with HIV/AIDS shows that the society needs move at a faster pace in redeeming the AGYW group from getting AIDS and providing alternative pathways for PLHIV AGYW that will help them get the right nutrition to improve their health. “
Says Lydia Charles, Executive Director of Her Initiative.