September 23, 2022

UN agency gives Zimbabwe thumbs up

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Mirirai Nsingo

 The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has noted, with satisfaction, increased efforts in the provision of sexual reproductive health rights in Zimbabwe.

Speaking after a tour of Tariro Clinic and Youth Centre in Harare’s Hopley settlement early this week, UNFPA director for East and Southern Africa, Lydia Zigomo- Nyatsanza, said provision of such rights remains critical in dealing with cases of unintended pregnancies, early marriages and high HIV prevalence among young people.

“I was impressed by the provision of services at this facility. what is evident from the work that is being done here is that the volume of women and girls coming through for assistance and support is overwhelming and offering that holistic services provision.

“I noted how the holistic service provision includes children immunisation, HIV response, sexual reproductive health services and gender based violence response, with normal primary healthcare services while offering an element of education and economic empowerment,” said the UNFPA regional director.

Tariro Clinic and Youth Centre is a government initiative supported by partners with an aim to improve sexual reproductive health outcomes of young people, while also enhancing skills development and economic empowerment.

Harare City Health Services Manager, Richard Chigerwe concurred that the interventions were timely for a vulnerable community like Hopley, which has not been spared by high HIV prevalence rate fuelled by rampant sex work, child marriages and high rates of gender-based violence.

 “Hopley is really one underserved populations in Harare, remember it was not a well-planned settlement yet faces a myriad of challenges hence the interventions through the setting up of Tariro Clinic and Youth Centre was a critical move.”

He further added how the institution was overwhelmed by clients, hence the need to increase human resources.

“One of the challenges here is the volume of people coming here for health services. Hopley has a population of 283 000 and we need more resources to cater for the volumes of people in need of services. we need more resources in terms of medicines but the biggest challenge is that of human resources.”

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