The launching of Getting to Zero 2011-2015 UNAIDS Strategy has come in time when the Global economic support for HIV responses is taking major decline because of a number of competing issues that include macro-economic challenges, increase in natural disasters, continued threat being posed by other communicable diseases among many other issues. Rozaria Memorial Trust believes "The Getting to Zero Strategy" can be achievable with the renewed positive commitment by all the stakeholders in the fight against HIV especially in the area of resource allocation in the most affected areas that include countries like Zimbabwe.
UNAIDS Getting to Zero Strategic Plan has clearly indicated that it is important that new HIV infections be stopped. It recognised the need to achieve a transition that will see fewer people newly infected than are newly placed on treatment. Doing so will require decisive action guided by a groundbreaking vision: zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination, zero AIDS-related deaths
Rozaria Memorial Trust will support and contribute towards this commitment through strengthening and supporting of community responses that sort to achieve the following:-
o Elimination of vertical transmission of HIV and reduction of AIDS-related maternal mortality in the rural communities.
o Improved access to antiretroviral therapy for people living with HIV who are eligible for treatment especially for children and women. People Living with HIV and AIDS and affected households receive community support on care and support services.
o Addressing of HIV-specific needs of women and girls in all national HIV responses. RMT calls for elimination of gender-based violence.
Rozaria Memorial Trust acknowledge that, beyond its health impact, the HIV responses should give an opportunity to strengthen the social framework, improve social justice and support systems that deliver critical services for the most vulnerable members of the communities especially women and children in the rural communities.
Getting to Zero Strategy for 2011-2015 has to promote for greater community involvement in health services to ensure effective contribution and sustainable programs that take into different social and cultural context that influence HIV responses. This will help in better understanding of community needs and constraints in the fight against HIV. Failure to involve the community may not only result in a failed intervention, but may also produce unforeseen and possibly adverse effects. In addition, community involvement can positively affect community norms and contextual factors to create an environment favourable to attainment of Getting to Zero by 2015 as stated in the UNAIDS Blueprint. Through its community work, RMT has discovered that non-community involvement will seize the opportunity to effect positive change in the fight against HIV.
Zimbabwe remains one of the hardest hit countries by the HIV and AIDS pandemic with estimated population of 1, 4 million living with the pandemic. The HIV prevalence currently stands at 13, 7 % in Murewa, Zimbabwe. Rozaria Memorial Trust is committed to elimination of new infections amongst children and enhanced access to treatment for people living with HIV.
Contact: Kudakwashe Dizha, Coordinator, Rozaria Memorial Trust