AHA Programmes (1997 – Present)
- Reproductive Health
- Capacity Development
- Sexual and Gender-Based Violence
- Water and Sanitation
AHA started work in Ethiopia in 1997, with programs running in twenty woredas (districts) of the Oromia Region and the South Nations Nationalities and Peoples Region (SNNPR). AHA Ethiopia works closely with local communities on providing Reproductive Health/Family Planning programs and on preventing and controlling the spread of Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) and HIV/AIDS. Our programs currently render service to 3.2 million beneficiaries and we employ diverse and innovative methods in order to develop community capacities, equipping people to achieve durable solutions to the challenges they face.
Working closely with local health centers, community and religious leaders, AHA is determined to improve health and supports sustainable socio-economic development. Activities see us training Community Based Reproductive Health Agents (CBRHAs), supporting income generation schemes, providing contraceptives, raising awareness of HIV/AIDS and working to reduce the incidence of Sexual and Gender-based Violence (SGBV). Whilst entirely complimentary, the breadth of our work is divided into the following program areas:
Information, Education, Communication (IEC):
Our IEC program reaches out to communities, delivering advice and information on important issues such as reproductive health, family planning, maternal and child health, child feeding and nutrition, post abortion care, sexually transmitted infections, HIV/AIDS, malaria prevention, and environmental sanitation.
Our HIV/AIDS program focuses on raising awareness and support for affected people. One hundred and forty AIDS orphaned children are supported by covering their basic needs in school fees, food, clothing and related expenses. In addition, safe sex guidance for commercial sex workers and training of PLWHAs in cattle fattening, poultry rearing, honeybee production, hair dressing, and tailoring, is provided and each of the AHA trained PLWHAs receive seed money in order to start their own income generating activities. In some cases beneficiaries use their money for individual projects, whilst others form associations run under a cooperative management system.
Our Family Planning teams provide hundreds of thousands of clients with information, contraceptives and referrals for ante natal, safe delivery, post natal and child care services.
Aware that education is the key to prevention; we support HIV/AIDS Youth Prevention Projects and work closely with young people and peer educators. This program runs numerous youth training sessions in subject matter such as life skills, female empowerment, community conversation and skill trainings for Anti-AIDS Clubs.
AHA Ethiopia employs a participatory approach, building on the strengths and capacities within individuals, communities and local organizations to ensure long-term gain from its programs. In 2006 alone, 1000 people were trained as Community Based Reproductive Health Agents and 100 People Living with HIV/AIDS educated in income generating activities such as cattle fattening, poultry rearing, honeybee production, hair dressing, and tailoring.
In certain cases AHA also provides financial aid, to assist people in developing their capacities. Recently we have leant support to more than one hundred AIDS orphaned children, in order to cover the costs of their basic needs, including school fees, food, clothing, and related expenses. A number of AHA trained PLWAs have also been provided with financial assistance in setting up their own income generating businesses. Whilst some people chose to initiate individual projects, others opted to form an association run under a cooperative management system. In each case people have the opportunity to improve their future economic status and wellbeing.
AHA takes special care that programmes are fully integrated into existing community structures, in order to promote ownership and longevity. The majority of staff are recruited from within a community and work closely with local leaders, religious heads, administrators, organisations, and community groups. Their work sees them visiting people at home, market places, work places, schools, religious gatherings, social gatherings and coffee ceremonies – raising people’s awareness on important issues and giving support where necessary.
For more information about AHA Ethiopia, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org