Peace Corps Kenya, a humanitarian capacity building agency has partnered with the Busia County Government with a view to help prevent HIV infections alongside accelerating the reduction of maternal, newborn, child and adolescent morbidity and mortality.
Within the collaboration, Peace Corps Kenya will provide trained volunteers (American Citizens) who will team up with Community health promoters in improving the reach and quality of services to the most vulnerable.
Speaking during an inception meeting held at a hotel in Busia town on Monday, the Agency’s Director for Programing and Training Lisa Mirande Lind said that the volunteers will help fill the gaps for technical assistance to achieve the primary goal of reducing HIV transmission and promoting healthy mother and child practices.
‘They are volunteers who serve in other countries and know how to work effectively in different communities,’ she said.
The Peace Corps Kenya Programme Manager-Health, Joseph Maruti said that they intend to increase the knowledge and skills of vulnerable youth between the ages of 9-24 and improve the community environment to enable youth to remain HIV free.
“We want to increase the knowledge and skills of women to adopt best practices that contribute to a healthy pregnancy, safe delivery, good postpartum health and healthy children between 0—5 years.
Maruti added that the agency also wants to improve community health workers’ knowledge and skills on HIV, Maternal and Child health education and behavior change messages.
Busia County County Executive Committee Member (CECM) for Health Beatrice Nakholi encouraged the agency to design a behavior change strategy that will encourage the local residents to take responsibility for their own health.
“We need to address the problem of behavior change more particularly among adolescents,” she said.
By Salome Alwanda