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Women’s Empowerment Project Launches in Zambia

USAID and Nascent Solutions successfully launched project WEAVE in Zambia’s Northern Province, with the goal of reducing the impact of HIV/AIDS, using a multi-sectoral approach.

18 months into implementation, WEAVE (Women Empowered to fight Aids and Violence Everywhere) is on track to meet or exceed the key project objectives of:

  1. Increasing the ability of 12000 HIV/AIDS infected women in Mpika district to start and run economically successful and sustainable small businesses.
  2. Improving the nutritional status of 1,500 vulnerable children under age 5.

The communities in Mpika, the target district, experience acute levels of poverty and illiteracy and live primarily by subsistence farming, surviving from harvest to harvest on meagre food crops in addition to harvesting edible caterpillars and producing charcoal for sale. Volunteers have facilitated the establishment of 306 women’s groups, comprising 5,705 members. And together these groups have achieved total savings amounting to K31, 863,200 ($6,613.52) in their village banks. The women are now able to borrow money from their village banks, and invest the funds to finance small businesses.

The second and essential objective of WEAVE in Mpika, of providing nutritional support to 1,500 malnourished children under age 5, has been attained and exceeded with nutritional support going to over 1,536 children so far. This has been achieved through the provision HEPS (High Energy Protein Supplements) and the utilization of the Positive Deviance Hearth Model, to nurture and help reintegrate malnourished children into the community.