Charity Gamba is a living testimony of the new approach towards fighting HIV/AIDS in Zambia. Gamba, a Community Based Distributor at Mafinga’s Zumbe Rural Health Centre, was among 54 community volunteers who received training in integrated HIV/AIDS and Family Planning (FP) services in June, 2017.

The integrated HIV/AIDS and FP services aims to ensure that clients undergo HIV Testing, Counselling, and linked to treatment, care and support.

She notes that the integrated approach has received overwhelming response from the public, stating that a good number of clients have realized the importance of knowing their status.

“The response from the clients is overwhelming” Gamba recounts, “We have many of the FP clients realizing the importance of knowing their status and starting medication immediately”.

After Gamba and others underwent training, 72 clients have so far been tested for HIV/AIDS at Zumbe RHC with her topping on the list of the number of clients serviced by individual CBDs at 37.

Charity Gamba, Mafinga District

“It was devastating, I could not believe that my daughter at a very tender age of 12 could be expecting a child of her own. So, I tried to tell myself it was only a dream that was surely going to pass, but it was not. I asked God a lot of questions? How was she going to take care of a child when we were living in poverty? I tried to find out about the person responsible for her pregnancy and as if to make matters worse, was told that it was a 15- year-old school going adolescent boy.”

In January 2017, Hildah enrolled in Grade six. The teen mother has pledged to continue working hard in school, until she completes Grade 12. She has commended SARAI for making her access the Family Planning method and go back to school.

Hildah Fungula, Kalulushi District