IOM Trains Health Partners to Combat HIV/Aids in Mozambique's Southern Transport Corridors
GENEVA, Switzerland, February 26, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- IOM is organising a six-day training on Gender, Migration and HIV from 25th February to 2nd March, in the Mozambican capital, Maputo, for key health partners working along Mozambique's southern transport corridors.
Participants, who have a background in health training, come from Manhica, Namaacha and Ressano Garcia, all situated along the southern transport corridors. They will learn how to address gender, migration and HIV-related challenges in the course of providing reproductive and sexual health services.
After completing the course, participants will in turn sensitise colleagues at their respective organisations, and use their newly-gained knowledge to train existing networks of change agents along the corridors. IOM will provide them with relevant training tools, including a locally-tested curriculum.
The southern transport corridors which link Maputo with South Africa and Swaziland go through a region with extremely high HIV prevalence. According to the most recent national inquiry, almost one in five adults is living with the virus (INSIDA 2009.)
In addition to being a key route for the transport sector, the area is characterised by high levels of circular labour migration, especially to and from commercial farms, mines and informal trading sites in South Africa and Swaziland.
In these areas, young women aged 20-34 are particularly vulnerable to HIV. IOM research undertaken along the corridors in 2011-2012 found that the sex trade is widespread in the area and that many sex workers are girls and young women who work in bars, roadside clubs and restaurants during weekends. Men who were interviewed during the research said that they preferred underage girls, because they did not mind having sex without using condoms.
The programme under which this training is run is a joint undertaking between IOM, UNFPA and UNICEF and is funded by UNAIDS. Implementing partners include community radios, and the NGOs AMODEFA (the Mozambican Association for the Development of the Family) and COALIZÃO (the Coalition for Mozambican Youth).