178881 Caring for Orphans and Vulnerable Children in Africa: An Integrated Model in Mozambique and Namibia

Monday, October 27, 2008: 1:06 PM

Sandra Dalebout, MPH , Project HOPE, Millwood, VA
Dionisio Matos , Project HOPE Mozambique, Maputo, Mozambique
Nelson Prada , Project HOPE Namibia, Windhoek, Namibia
John Bronson , Project HOPE, Millwood, VA
Renslow D. Jr Sherer, MD , Project HOPE and University of Chicago, Millwood, VA
Andee Cooper, MPH , Consultant, Durham, NC

Focusing on the OVC caregiver, Project HOPE's model provides parenting skills training across valuable areas of need such as health, nutrition, psycho-social support, education, shelter, and rights. As poverty is one of the significant barriers to achieving even the most basic needs of OVC, Project HOPE's integrated model also incorporates economic strengthening activities to enable caregivers to have the means to implement the lessons learned in the training. With greater financial resources and expanded self-sufficiency, caregivers can better provide for the needs of their families. The greater community is also involved in the program through volunteers who provide training and reinforce better care at the household level. The integrated model allows caregivers to purchase more and better food, pay for school fees and uniforms, access health care services, and improve the household environment.


Since October 2004, 4,441 caregivers and 448 volunteers have been trained in OVC care and support, serving 25,071 OVC, and 11,253 OVC have participated in the micro-credit loan program. Comparative data after participation in the program will be presented. Results to date shows improvements in both income and health indicators, including increases in the average number of meals in the last two days, improved utilization of health services when needed and decreases in vulnerability in the number of months income was insufficient.


Innovative and sustainable approaches are needed to address the needs of OVC. By strengthening the economic capacity of OVC caregivers combined with teaching knowledge and skills needed to care for OVC, Project HOPE is helping families and communities in multiple countries in Africa cope with the OVC crisis in a sustainable manner by providing the means for families to help themselves.

Learning Objectives:
By the end of the presentation, participants will understand Project HOPE’s integrated model for improving the lives of OVC in two countries in Africa and how to apply it in other countries.

Keywords: International Health, Children's Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Headquarters technical backstop for this project.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.