Tanzania is a low-income country that has been dramatically affected by HIV/AIDS over the past 30 years. One result is a substantial number of vulnerable children—some of them orphans—who survive in single parent families or are cared for by relatives. This is a burden that poor families or poor communities can ill-afford.
Small Steps to Great Solutions
Africa Bridge, VWB/VSF’s primary partner in Tanzania has focused its efforts to support vulnerable children on improving the economic fortunes of families and communities. In rural Tanzania most people depend on agriculture, so Africa Bridge, with the help of VWB/VSF volunteers is working to improve the income that people realize from agriculture. Volunteers support poultry and cattle production, as well as the organizations, mostly co-operatives, which have been created to market and distribute agricultural products. Volunteers treat and vaccinate animals and work to improve nutrition and other aspects of animal husbandry. An important element of that is training local people as community animal health workers. Ensuring that women and girls are able to realize the benefits of this programming is always a priority for VWB/VSF so expertise in gender inclusion is always an important consideration.
Building on a Long History
The work with Africa Bridge builds on a long history of support for vulnerable children in this region. Under the guidance of Dr. Roger Thomson, VWB/VSF has supported poultry production in the village of Ilima. That project involves the local school and has a particular focus on vulnerable children and youth.