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Food security through the lens of HIV/AIDS

It is vital that aid agencies continue to refine their approaches to food aid distribution, given the impact of HIV/AIDS in the region, says the Consortium for Southern Africa Food Security Emergency (C-SAFE). As a result, C-SAFE is running its own training course, "HIV and AIDS: Opportunities for Food Security Programming", for its members in Zambia, Zimbabwe and Malawi. Kate Greenaway, C-SAFE Regional HIV/AIDS Technical Advisor and workshop organiser, said in a statement that "the goals of the training are to provide technical updates on HIV, AIDS and nutrition that will influence and inform future programming". The training will also facilitate internal networking and information sharing within and between C-SAFE partners; "provide insight into existing capacities and expertise; and facilitate external networking and information sharing to connect C-SAFE managers with state-of-the-art work being executed by other [humanitarian] stakeholders". "Food security and nutrition play an integral part in HIV and AIDS interventions, so in this training we are looking at the state of play - how far along these interventions are in rolling out, and how could C-SAFE contribute to their success. It is vital that C-SAFE continues to refine its approaches to food aid distribution, targeting of beneficiaries, agricultural recovery programming and Food For Work, taking into account the influence of HIV and AIDS," Greenaway said. The first of three workshops was held in Zambia last week. "Agencies pledged to review training curriculums on nutrition and HIV/AIDS education to strengthen and standardise messages, schedule monthly staff training events on HIV/AIDS, as well as include presentations from persons living positively, promote trench gardening in food-for-work/food security projects and expand natural remedies seminars to C-SAFE project beneficiaries," the organisation said. Among the agencies participating in the three-day programme were World Vision, CARE, Catholic Relief Services, Save the Children US, Save the Children UK, the Salvation Army and Africare. Training sessions in Malawi and Zimbabwe are planned for the next month. C-SAFE said training information would soon be available on CD and at: www.c-safe.org

This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions

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