Aids trust backs NDS1

Source: The Herald – Breaking news.

Aids trust backs NDS1 
Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution for Manicaland Advocate Misheck Mugadza

Victor Maphosa

Mashonaland East Bureau

Family AIDS Caring Trust (FACT) Zimbabwe has launched its 2024-2026 strategic plan, which strongly contributes and supports the National Development Strategy 1 pillar on health and wellbeing and other issues around youth, disability inclusion, care and protection of vulnerable groups, and climate resilience.

The strategic plan was launched in Mutare recently at an event attended by senior Government officials who included Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution for Manicaland Advocate Misheck Mugadza as well as FACT Zimbabwe staff.

This plan will be guided by four strategic pillars: safeguarding and sustaining livelihood, strategic information and research, organisational efficiency and effectiveness, and health and wellbeing.

Priority key areas included vulnerable children and communities affected by HIV, youth development, gender-based violence response, sustainable livelihoods, and adaptation to emergencies and disasters.

FACT Zimbabwe has a long history spanning over 35 years of implementing development work, particularly responding to HIV and AIDS in Manicaland and beyond. 

The strategic plan builds on the tremendous work that FACT Zimbabwe has been doing over the past three decades as it complements the Government of Zimbabwe. 

In his remarks, Advocate Mugadza commended FACT for a plan that is in support of Government initiatives aimed at attaining Vision 2030.

“Government of Zimbabwe is guided by the National Development Strategy 1: 2021-2025 (NDS1) as we aspire to achieve an upper-middle-income society by 2030. The NDS1 is our first 5-year Medium Term Plan aimed at realising the country’s Vision 2030, while simultaneously addressing the global aspirations of the Sustainable Development Goals and Africa Agenda 2063. I am delighted to say that FACT Zimbabwe’s strategy is firmly anchored in this national development framework and other appropriate global and national documents such as the Zimbabwe national HIV and AIDS strategic plan, the UNAIDS global AIDS strategy, and PEPFAR 5×3 strategy. 

“This alignment ensures non-governmental organisations efforts are synchronised and complement Government efforts, thereby maximising our collective effort and contributing to the broader goals of health improvement and poverty reduction. 

“Specifically, FACT Zimbabwe strategy contributes to the NDS1 pillar on health and wellbeing and other cross-cutting issues around youth, disability inclusion, care and protection of vulnerable groups, and climate resilience, among others. 

“Health is a fundamental human right according to the Constitution of Zimbabwe. Hence, the overall outcome of the health sector during the NDS1 period is to improve the quality of life and life expectancy at birth from the current 61 years to 65 years. Although overall health sector funding has been increasing from 2014-2019, driven mainly by increases in domestic financing, several key health programmes are still largely being funded by development partners.

“I am informed that the development of the FACT Zimbabwe strategy was a truly collaborative effort, which is in line with the President’s call to ‘leave noone behind’. It is commendable that FACT Zimbabwe actively engaged key line ministries and government departments, including the Ministry of Health and Child Care, Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, Ministry of Women Affairs, the National AIDS Council, and Department of Social Development. 

“The team also consulted development partners, community leadership and the recipients of care for the projects they are implementing. Such an inclusive process has resulted in a comprehensive and well-grounded strategy that has the buy-in of all stakeholders,” he said.

He challenged everyone to work hard to ensure the goals set in the strategic plan were achieved.

“Let me underscore that the launch of this Strategy is not an end in itself but rather a call to action. This 2024-2026 strategy is a clear roadmap, but the journey to achieving the goals outlined will require dedication, collaboration, and unwavering commitment from all of us. I urge every one of you to join hands with FACT Zimbabwe to contribute towards building a brighter future for all vulnerable groups in Manicaland province and beyond.”

Mrs Getrude Shumba, who is FACT Zimbabwe executive director, reiterated the commitment FACT has in ending HIV and AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.

“FACT Zimbabwe is a Christian-based organisation working in and through partnerships to improve health including HIV and AIDS and reduce poverty among marginalised people in Zimbabwe and beyond with a special focus on gender.”