Online Program

Impact assessment of a community-based, multi-sectoral intervention to empower OVC in rural Kenya

Monday, November 4, 2013

Michael L Goodman, MPH, DrPH(c), Department of Management, Policy and Community Health, University of Texas School of Public Health, Houston, TX
Philip Keiser, MD, Infectious Diseases, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX
Reegan Kaberia, MBA, Kenya, Zoe Orphan Empowerment Ministry, Maua, Kenya
An estimated 41 million children in sub-Sahara Africa had lost one or both parents as of 2009, largely as a result of the HIV pandemic. Some African governments and NGOs have begun implementing cash transfer programs to families of orphans to cover educational and food expenses over the past decade. This study utilized a cross-sectional survey of 707 youth heads-of-households in a faith-based program operating in Kenya that goes beyond typical direct cash transfer projects and requires participating orphan and vulnerable children (OVC) siblings to develop an income-generating activity to sustain beyond the funded period. The program duration is three years with weekly group and monthly regional meetings, offering social, economic, and health support. The mean incomes for OVCs in the third year (n=201) of the three-year program more than doubled from those in the first year (n=319). The number OVC siblings who had gone without food over the past year “often” decreased from 40% to 14% between the first year and third year cohorts. Overall earnings, food security, medical security, malaria net usage, condom usage, number of different sexual partners, literacy rates and water sanitation practices all significantly improved between the first and third cohorts. This study demonstrates that a program aimed at empowering OVC in a setting like rural Kenya can effectively provide beneficial social and health protections, and furthers the literature on best-practices related to care for AIDS-affected OVC in sub-Sahara Africa.

Learning Areas:

Administration, management, leadership
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
Identify a successful intervention to improve economic, nutritional, social and overall health of independent families of orphans and vulnerable children in Kenya Analyze differences in outcomes of financial, food and medical security, literacy and education as a function of a community-based intervention in rural Kenya

Keyword(s): Child/Adolescent, Vulnerable Populations

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I hold a master's in public health and am a current candidate for the doctorate in public health in good academic standing. I was the principal investigator for this study.
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.