Minister of Gender, Community Development and Social Welfare Patricia Kaliati has handed over 2 860 bicycles to community cadres working on Ana Patsogolo Activity project in eight HIV high-burden districts in the Southern Region.
The project, being implemented by Catholic Diocese of Chikwawa, Global Aids Interfaith Alliance of Malawi, Global Hope Mobilisation, Malawi Aids Counselling and Resources Organisation (Macro) and YouthNet and Counselling, is funded by United States Agency for International Development (USaid).
At least K26 billion has been pumped into the project to fight cases of defilement, gender-based violence (GBV) and HIV and Aids, which put lives of children, adolescent girls and young women at risk.
Speaking at St. Martin’s ground in Senior Chief Chowe’s area in Mangochi, Kaliati hailed the project, saying it has come at the right time when the country is looking for support to fight GBV, HIV and Aids, defilement and other menaces.
“The bikes will help the cadres to reach the remotest areas to empower people with information and also protect them,” she said.
In her remarks, USaid mission director Catie Lott said their target is to help the country reduce cases of HIV and Aids and other related cases to protect children who are at high risk.
Macro executive director Clement Udedi said they expect to see more girls taking part in economic activities, equipped with vocational skills and information about sexual reproductive rights so that they can report any abuses.
Other districts under the project are Blantyre, Chikwawa, Zomba, Machinga, Mangochi, Phalombe, Mulanje and Thyolo.