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By IREEN MULENGA
The United States government, through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), has awarded grants to fifteen organizations through the 2021 PEPFAR Small Grants Program.
Public Affairs Officer Phil Dimon said the PEPFAR Small Grants Program was created to support the work of local community and civil society organizations.
Mr Dimon said that the annual funding provides grants in amounts between 170,000 kwacha ($10,000) and 425,000 kwacha ($25,000) to support community-led programs and activities in HIV prevention, support to Orphans And Vulnerable Children (OVC) and their households, democracy and governance related to Zambia’s HIV response.
“Through the generous support of the American people, PEPFAR awarded over 4.6 million kwacha to 15 community- and faith-based non-governmental organizations across six provinces in Zambia.
“The fifteen organizations were selected through a highly competitive application process that included nearly 200 applicants. The funded programs will increase access and equity in the delivery of comprehensive HIV services; combat HIV/AIDS stigma and discrimination; and provide treatment support for people living with HIV,” he said.
He said the grants will help strengthen the capacity of community and civil society organizations to deliver and support HIV-related services while improving community engagement.
Mr Dimon said the fifteen organizations supported by the PEPFAR Small Grants Program are diverse in their missions and in the vulnerable communities they serve.
He said one grant recipient, the Sign Language Channel of Zambia, contributes to the national HIV response by providing deaf children and adults with education on HIV prevention and care through sign language.
Mr Dimon said the Sign Language Channel of Zambia empowers teachers with skills to provide deaf children and adults with HIV awareness messages, and produces videos on HIV prevention, care, and treatment used for school outreach.
He said PEPFAR Zambia has proudly supported community and civil society organizations in Zambia since its inception in 2005.
Applications for the 2022 Small Grants Program will open in January 2022.