URC at AIDS 2012: Improving the Well-being of Vulnerable Children

Due to the long-term effects of HIV/AIDS and poverty, families and communities in many countries cannot provide care and support to large numbers of children. URC staff member Dr. Diana Chamrad will present results Wednesday from URC’s efforts to improve care provided to children orphaned or made extremely vulnerable by HIV/AIDS. Hers is one of eleven poster presentations by URC staff taking place during the XIX International AIDS Conference. 

URC works to improve the well-being of vulnerable children through the US Agency for International Development (USAID) Health Care Improvement Project, funded by the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), in Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Haiti, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Tanzania, and Zambia. Dr. Chamrad will present “Developing Standards of Care for Vulnerable Children in Nine Countries” in Exhibition Hall D at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center at 12:30 p.m. 

Government, civil society, and the international donor community are attempting to fill gaps in care and support for vulnerable children and families through public services. HCI assists those organizations in developing quality care standards for monitoring and evaluating care provided along seven dimensions: health, education, nutrition, shelter, psycho-social well-being, legal protection, and household economic strengthening. 

Film Highlights Successes in Kenya

In Kenya, more than 2.5 million children have been orphaned or made vulnerable by HIV/AIDS. “Care that Counts: Applying Quality Standards to OVC Services in Kenya” is an 18-minute film that tells the story of how the staff and volunteers at two organizations, FHI-360’s Speak for the Child Project and Maua Methodist Hospital’s ZOE Project, applied quality care standards and changed not only care for vulnerable children but also the communities where they live.

The organizations used quality improvement methods to pilot standards of care and tools for program staff to identify and address the gaps in their services. For example, one organization discovered that the children it was serving could not attend school because they lacked birth certificates. The organization worked with community leaders and family members to obtain birth certificates, enabling the children to return to school.

Read more about URC’s work with vulnerable children and families here.

A young girl shown in the film, "Care that Counts: Applying Quality Standards to OVC Services in Kenya."
A young girl shown in the film, "Care that Counts: Applying Quality Standards to OVC Services in Kenya."
July 18, 2012