For years, USAID has worked in East Africa to improve the lives of people in poverty. The East Africa Regional program “works across borders to strengthen food security, improve economic growth, prevent conflict, and improve health systems, with a particular focus on fighting HIV/AIDS.” On May 28, USAID partnered with the East African Community (EAC) to improve health services and most importantly, achieve an AIDS free generation.
EAC and USAID’s new five year project “on Cross-Border Health Integrated Partnership (CB-HIPP) [is] designed to extend integrated health services in strategic border areas and other transport corridor sites,” according to All Africa. Because USAID has invested over $1 billion in the East African region, implementing this program is sure to bring focus to issues that are affecting the community.
This project also has the support of the United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). PEPFAR is a U.S. initiative that aims to create a generation free of AIDS by following their five agendas. Their goals are to control the epidemic, efficiently save lives, maintain sustainability, build partnerships and promote human rights. “This historic commitment is the largest by any nation to combat a single disease internationally, and PEPFAR investments also help alleviate suffering from other diseases across the global health spectrum,” says PEPFAR.
The CB-HIPP is focusing on helping sex workers, drug users, migrant workers and others living with HIV/AIDS. They have recognized the risk of easy contagion and are finding ways to contain it. Working closely with the governments of East Africa will help distribute medication and implement the program.
Because “Eastern Africa is the second most affected region by HIV/AIDS in the world after Southern Africa,” according to the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC), PEPFAR and EAC-USAID’s health program will save millions of people. These programs give hope to those struggling around the world and will one day make it possible to see a world free of HIV/AIDS.
– Kimberly Quitzon