By MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare
JAPAN has allocated over US$1 million to support Zimbabwe’s coronavirus (COVID-19) response. The financial support given to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is to provide responsive and preventive care interventions to
vulnerable children and women across multiple sectors including health, nutrition, HIV/AIDS, gender as well as child protection and education.
The project will be implemented in 32 districts across the country. “UNICEF is thankful for the continued support from the Japanese Government for their ongoing commitment to the children, adolescents and women of Zimbabwe,” said Amina Mohammed, UNICEF Zimbabwe acting representative. Through nutrition interventions, 200 000 children aged 6-59 months will be screened for acute malnutrition for early identification and referral for treatment.
It estimated that 30 000 mothers and caregivers of children below the age of two will receive support and treatment for babies suffering from malnutrition, as well as COVID-19 related nutrition counselling and training on the preparation of safe and healthy food. HIV/AIDS interventions will provide mentorship to 1 200 health workers
in the affected health facilities to build their capacity in HIV/Sexual and Reproductive Health.
Treatment and referral services will be provided for 2 000 pregnant and breastfeeding women to ensure continuation of prevention of mother-to-child transmission. In the education sector, alternative home learning materials will be
provided to nearly 13 000 vulnerable learners. “This support from Japan through UNICEF will help to ensure that, during this crisis, some of the most vulnerable children and women, whose livelihoods have been disrupted by the impacts of COVID-19, will have access to adequate nutrition, healthcare and education, and communities will be more resilient in the future,” Satoshi Tanaka, Ambassador of Japan to Zimbabwe, said. – CAJ News