Merry 2012 Christmas from HAZ

Here’s wishing for a Blessed Merry Christmas to all and a Happy New Year as well.  We thank all of our volunteers, contributors, supporters, donors, subscribers and guests, and look forward to seeing you again in 2013.  Please stay safe, and God Bless.

HIV/AIDS|Zimbabwe Charity, INC.

Sweet Seed

by NoViolet Bulawayo

For Nene.

He could have been wearing an expensive dress of bones, my brother Ronald, that’s how I remember him, lying there on that narrow bed by the broken window, skeletal thin like a man fed on pins all his life. There were the screaming curves of skull, a spine like the edge of a table, the most perfect jut of hip, knee, rib, bone and bone and bones, Jesus, nothing but bones. And then the skin, tautest cloth draping over the bones, over dried furrows, rivers of blood once, then the weary eyes, drowning in the depths of edged sockets.

This is how I remember him; I was fifteen and I woke up everyday to search the country of that strange new body for my brother. What I saw was war. And it raged and we watched it drag out, bombs falling above my sisters’ prayers, above my grandmother’s prayers, and at fifteen I crossed my fingers and thought, Like, isn’t this where God is s’possed to do something, like, can’t he hear them praying? The bombs fell above pills and medicines, above herbs and mutis and talismans, above every hopeful hope, every plea, every single thing that could have been; it was a terrible war and couldn’t nobody stop it but at fifteen it never occurred to me that my brother was dying, didn’t occur to me that this was the AIDS they were talking about on the news, the AIDS of foreign countries and whores and everything that was not who we were, and if it occurred to anybody then they kept it inside like blood and we walked around in silent silence, adults slow-dancing with grief already because yes, war was war —

 But in that war though, we never cried. Never sent distress signals, there were no flags, no shouts to the neighbors. We kept it all under the tongue like a zhanje seed made too precious to spit out by the memory of its sweetness. We pursued our mouths and smiled on the street, and at fifteen I went to school and kicked it with my homegirls and homeboys with names like Thabs, Leslie, Sna, Thuts, Stha – Ronald my sweet seed under the tongue like a forbidden lover. And after school I ran home to pick up my guns and be a child soldier standing at the edge of my brother’s bed, around me feet and feet marching into silence and more silence.
And when one afternoon Ronald’s war ended, not because we won, we flung the gates open and the village came and there was wailing and wailing and wailing but nobody said AIDS. We said Rest in Peace, Go well, He fought Hard, Ronald, Ronald, “Thabath’ is’phambano, ulandele. Tshiya lumhlaba, lentozawo, ngcono ngiz’hambele, ngalindlela. Thabath’ is’phambano, ulandele. Tshiya lumhlaba, lentozawo, ngcono ngiz’hambele, ngalindlela.”
And when after the funeral I stood alone in my father’s bedroom, Ronald’s crisp death certificate in my trembling tresspassing hands and I saw the words “Cause of death—HIV-AIDS”. I read them with barely-moving lips, softly, softly, so the wind would never know.

Republished on HIV/AIDS|Zimbabwe Charity, INC. (HAZ) with prior written authorization from NoViolet Bulawayo.
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Partnering to fight HIV/AIDS

by David Bruce Wharton | The Herald

Ambassador David Bruce Wharton.

Every year on December 1, we commemorate World Aids Day. It is a day to reflect on the lives lost and forever changed, as a result of Aids. It is also an opportunity to pay tribute to the 34 million people living with HIV worldwide. Today, we celebrate those lives saved and improved in Zimbabwe and recommit to the fight against Aids.

The world has made tremendous progress over the last 30 years through research and innovation in science. We recognise that because of the advances made and the lessons learned, we can now look ahead to an Aids-free generation.

Ending Aids is a shared responsibility. Here in Zimbabwe, we must continue to work together to increase our efforts in the response. Everyone has a role to play — Government leaders, the private sector, multilateral organisations, civil society, media, faith-based organisations and each one of us.

Since 2000, the United States government has invested nearly US$300 million in Zimbabwe’s fight against the HIV virus. We will invest nearly US$92 million dollars through PEPFAR — the US president’s Emergency Plan for Aids Relief — in Zimbabwe over the next year. I am proud to say the US is the first and largest donor to the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria and has made an historic multi-year pledge of US$4 billion for 2011-2013.

Progress towards country leadership of HIV/Aids programs is essential for gains to be sustainable in the long term. Through PEPFAR, the United States is working closely with Zimbabwe to build the country’s capacity to lead an effective national response.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has used the term “country ownership” to describe the end state where a nation’s efforts are led, implemented and eventually paid for by its government, communities, civil society, and the private sector. To arrive at this point, each country’s leaders must set priorities and develop national plans to accomplish them in concert with their citizens.

The US recognises Zimbabwe’s leadership in implementing HIV/Aids programs and is committed to continuing our partnership in this direction.

I recently returned to Zimbabwe as ambassador after serving as the Counsellor for Public Affairs here at the US Embassy from 1999-2003. I am thrilled to be back in this beautiful country. It is good to see concrete improvements in the fight against HIV. Our work together on HIV provides a model for co-operation that I will seek to replicate in other parts of our relationship.

Zimbabwe has made progress in turning the tide on this terrible disease, and the United States through PEPFAR is proud to play a supporting role. For example, life-saving anti-retroviral treatment is a critical intervention in Zimbabwe, keeping people with HIV alive and helping them to avoid transmitting the virus to others.

Zimbabwe is on its way to achieving universal treatment coverage, with more than 85 percent of those eligible on treatment, by the end of this year with the United States supporting anti-retroviral medications for 80 000 Zimbabweans.

Next year, the United States will support anti-retroviral medication for an additional 60 000 men, women, and children in Zimbabwe and the following year will again expand to a grand total of 160 000 individuals. Ongoing US support for laboratory testing, training, and quality improvement also contribute substantially to the national treatment program.

PEPFAR has directly supported over 521 000 people in Zimbabwe with care and support programs, including nearly 121 000 orphans and vulnerable children. PEPFAR’s efforts to prevent the transmission of HIV from mothers to newborns have allowed nearly 50 000 HIV-positive mothers to receive antiretrovirals, thus reducing the risk of HIV transmission to their babies.

This progress, evidenced by millions of lives saved, is remarkable, but there is more to do. We are using recent scientific advances to implement more effective programs to provide HIV prevention, treatment and care to millions of people worldwide, including in communities throughout Zimbabwe.

In all we do, we are focusing on using our resources as effectively and efficiently as possible to maximise the impact of our investments and save more lives. Through strong leadership from the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare and the National Aids Council and in collaboration with the Global Fund and PEPFAR, treatment in Zimbabwe has reached universal access and continues to be rolled out to the benefit of those living with HIV in Zimbabwe.

Additionally, through the leadership of the health ministry and NAC, prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission continues to be expanded with over 1 560 sites offering treatment of HIV positive mothers to prevent transmission of HIV to their babies.

Global health is a shared responsibility and it is more essential than ever that countries work closely with external partners such as the United States and key multilateral organisations like Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria. Together, PEPFAR and the Global Fund supported over 70 percent of all persons on anti-retroviral treatment in developing countries worldwide in 2011.

As we look to the future, the United States remains committed to the global HIV/Aids response. We will continue to work closely with Zimbabwe and its partners to move towards a long-term response that saves even more lives.

David Bruce Wharton is US Ambassador to Zimbabwe.


Republished on HIV/AIDS|ZIMBABWE CHARITY INC., with prior written authorization from:
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Down to the wire: 10 days left in our clinics fundraising campaign

HAZ Country Operations Director for Zimbabwe discusses treatment regimen with patients at a HAZ clinic session.

We have received US$122 in response to our Indiegogo campaign, which is aimed at raising US$5,544 to be used for the purchase of the new formulation of HIV/AIDS medications for the patients in our Clinical Services Program. WE are now down to the wire, with only 10 days left in our fundraising campaign. We still need to raise over US$5,000 for our Clinical Services Program in Zimbabwe. Forget about the $5,000. If you give just US$22, you will help us keep one of our patients alive and health for one month!! Now you surely can do that!

You may submit your donation directly to Indiegogo, or donate through our website. Either way, the funds will be tallied through our newly implemented HAZ Financial Report page, which can be accessed under the HAZ Publications menu. All funds donated for the 2013 Clinical Services Program will be held in reserve and only used in 2013 for the purchase of the new ARV formulation.

25 Days and US$5,444 Left To Go!

We have received US$100 in response to our Indiegogo campaign, which is aimed at raising US$5,544 to be used for the purchase of the new formulation of HIV/AIDS medications for the patients in our Clinical Services Program.  WE have 25 days left in our campaign, and still need to raise US$5,444!  The funds will be enough to provide less toxic ARVs to all our patients in 2013.  We need your support and ask for your support.

You may submit your donation directly to Indiegogo, or donate through our website.  Either way, the funds will be tallied through our newly implemented HAZ Financial Report page, which can be accessed under the HAZ Publications menu.  All funds donated for the 2013 Clinical Services Program will be held in reserve and only used in 2013 for the purchase of the new ARV formulation.