Global Alliance for A Healthy Society (GAHSO) is offering a Covid-19 Care Package to Vulnerable households with Children living with HIV(CHLIV) in Siaya County for a period of three months. We intend to distribute the care package:The care package includes Maize flour, Sugar, Rice, Hand sanitizer, sanitary pads, Cooking oil, reusable masks and soap.
We have close 500 CHLIV within our program that need urgent nutritional support to boost their viral load suppression.
Kenya’s total population according to the 2009 census is 38.6 million, of which 21 million are children, and 6 million are aged 0-4 years (KPHC, 2009). The Kenya government signed and ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and the African Charter on Rights and Welfare of Children (ACRWC) and domesticated these treaties through the Children Act (2001). The Kenya National Bureau of Statists (KNBS) projected the total population of Siaya County as at 2016 to be 932,754 people comprising of 431,865 males (46.3%) and 500,889 females (53.7%). The county has an annual population growth rate of 1.7% and is projected to increase to 964,390 persons in 2017 (456,441 male and 507,949 female). The county is divided into six administrative sub-counties namely; Gem, Ugunja, Ugenya, Alego-Usonga, Bondo and Rarieda. The sub counties are further divided into wards totaling to 30.
In Siaya County, the main economic activities include subsistence farming, livestock keeping, fishing, rice farming and small-scale trading. The other strengths of Siaya County include natural resources like indigenous forests, rivers, agricultural land and fisheries. Tourist attractions include: Yala swamp and wetlands, Ndanu Falls, Lake Kanyaboli and Lake Victoria. Kenya HIV county profile 2016 places it among the top four countries in Africa reporting high HIV prevalence. The national HIV prevalence remains high at approximately 6% as indicated in the last Kenya AIDS Indicator Survey (KAIS) report of 2012. Siaya County contributes 24.8% to the national prevalence. Siaya County is ranked 3rd after Homabay and Migori among counties with high disease burden and high incidences of HIV and AIDS in Kenya.
The estimated number of people living with HIV virus (PLHIV) in Siaya county stands at 126,411 (county HIV profiles report 2016). Out of this number living with HIV virus, only 58% are on life saving anti-retroviral treatment (ARVs), with adults at 60% and children at 48% (Kenya AIDS Indicator Survey 2014). In Kenya, of the 21 million children, it is estimated that 2.5 million are vulnerable children and half of them are due to HIV and AIDS mostly contracted through mother to child transmission. HIV and AIDS is a major threat to child survival and development as it affects the nutritional status of children and leads to increased incidences of common infections
OVC constitute the most vulnerable members of the society because they lack basic needs such as food, health care, shelter and education. In addition, they are stigmatized, thus exposing them to further abuse and exploitation. At the community and family level there is increased stress on the extended families as they try to care for these children while an increasing number of elderly and young children are forced to become household heads hence deprived off from growing as normal children. Often in the absence of support structure when their parents die or get ill, they further get exposed to child labor, sexual exploitation and violation of their rights as children. HIV/AIDS has negatively affected productivity of this communities and households especially agricultural production leading to malnutrition cases. The key driving factors of the HIV/AIDS epidemic is Siaya County remains poverty, Socio-cultural factors like low uptake of male circumcision, widow inheritance, taboos and community rites involving sex like mandatory sex before planting, alcohol and substance abuse among others. As per Kenya HIV County profile 2016, Siaya County accounts for 6062 households with orphans and vulnerable children who are living in environments that are dilapidated and are very needy.
Our purpose is to ease their burden. We already started delivering food to the families in need and we wanted to give you a chance to get involved as well. Your contribution, no matter how small, can save lives today.