Tag Archives: America

Food Assistance to be Provided to Tanzania

“Tanzania is among seven African countries that will benefit from a donation of more than 100,000 tons of agricultural commodities valued at US$170 million from the AmeriAcan people under the Food for Education program this year, the US Embassy here said Monday,” says an Afrique en ligne article.

Food assistance provides a healthy meal and may be the only meal that children receive each day. It will benefit 244,315 children. The program is administered by the USDA and donates agricultural products and technical assistance.

“Overall support from the American people to Tanzania’s agriculture sector impr oves productivity, access to credit, and food processing capacity to help Tanzania overcome regional and seasonal food insecurity and boost family incomes, especially among women smallholder farmers,” quotes the article.

‘Given Tanzania’s enormous agricultural potential, this assistance supports Tanzania’s goals of achieving food self-sufficiency, improving the business climate for agriculture, and eventually becoming a major food exporter to the region and the world,’ the embassy statement added.

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Healtcare Reform and HIV/AIDS

Is AIDSTanzania going to go political and talk about the pros/cons of the healthcare reform storm that is sweeping the nation? No. But it is worth thinking about how the healthcare bill will affect those at risk for HIV and those already living with HIV/AIDS. For example, read the following quote from the AlterNet.org article: “Forty-five percent of people with HIV/AIDS in the United States have incomes under $10,000 a year, and 50 percent lack regular medical coverage.” That is a staggering statistic.

With all of the talk about who really benefits from the bill, who doesn’t benefit, and what this will do to our disenfranchised citizens, it is worth thinking about those who are some of the most disenfranchised of all – those living with HIV/AIDS and who are already struggling to get access to affordable, non-discriminatory, and beneficial healthcare. Also, any type of freeze to domestic spending on health and human service programs will hurt both those who are HIV-positive and those who are at risk.

No matter what your political position, something to think about.

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Domestic Action to Fight AIDS Among Women Lacking

March is Women’s History Month. On March 10th, according to AlterNet.org, America “celebrated” Women and Girls’ HIV Awareness Day. But apparently there wasn’t anything to celebrate, since our country has made relatively little progress in awareness or policy around the high HIV rate for women, particularly African-American women and girls. The article laments that our international AIDS relief plans address the gendered issues around HIV prevention and treatment, while our own domestic policy largely ignores the epidemic.

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Club Raises Awareness for Disaffected Children in Tanzania

This article, published in the Arizona Daily Wildcat (the newspaper for the University of Arizona), discusses an international service trip similar to AIDSTanzania at William and Mary. It’s called Support for International Change, and it sends groups of students to Tanzania to promote HIV testing and awareness in northern Tanzania.

As one group member described, the trips are like a study abroad experience, except you’re volunteering as a member of the community and getting involved with helping others, as opposed to just looking. That sums it up quite well. Keep up the good work, Support for International Change!

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Association Shown Between Climate, Conflict in Africa

A unique piece of research: U.S. Researchers are suggesting that conflict in Africa was 50% more likely in warm years, supporting prior research that showed a link between conflict and rainfall. Crop yields are extremely sensitive to shifts in temperature, even if only 1/2 a degree, and food shortages may increase the likelihood of civil strife. Databases of temperature across sub-Saharan Africa were correlated with civil conflict where over 1,000 people died.

“Our findings provide strong impetus to ramp up investments in African adaptation to climate change by such steps as developing crop varieties less sensitive to extreme heat and promoting insurance plans to help protect farmers from adverse effects of the hotter climate,” said Dr. Burke from the University of California at Berkeley.

Read the full article here.

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AIDS has Economic Impacts in Tanzania

“But global crisis aside, Tanzania is in a job crisis of its own characterised by the devastating HIV/Aids pandemic and low competitiveness and productivity, experts say,” Damas Kanyabwoya writes for AllAfrica.com.Read the full article here.

It is important for us to remember that HIV has human and social effects beyond the side effects of the disease itself. Jeffrey D. Sachs, author of The End of Poverty, writes that he was shocked during his first visit to Zambia, when many of his Zambian colleagues were incapacitated by AIDS. In his book, he relays how he had never imagined that an illness could be so economically devastating. Indeed, it seems unimaginable to those living in a country like the United States that a disease could have an impact big enough to cause a drain among the working population, even big enough to hurt the economy.

Tanzania faces a similar problem to the one Sachs recognizes in Zambia, and it is exacerbated by malaria, TB, and cholera. When a country is crippled by disease, there is a viscious cycle of disease and poverty – countries do not have the money to fight disease, and so their working populations and schoolchildren are distracted or killed by illness, and thus there isn’t the education or capital to generate money.

Adding economic impacts to the discussion of HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment will help educators, researchers, and leaders fight the disease most effectively.

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U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi praises Tanzania

Nancy Pelosi commended Tanzania to Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete last week for its transparent and proper use of grants (read the full article here).

“Mr. president…rest assured that you have good friends from both the Republican and Democratic camps,” said Ms Pelosi. Mr. Kikwete responded by encouraging more support for Tanzania: “Help us to mobilise US investors to come to Tanzania and exploit many opportunities available in our country, particularly after the support granted through the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC).”

Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House of Representatives

Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House of Representatives

Hopefully, that will happen – and the solid relationship between Tanzania and the U.S. will continue to grow. Case in point, Tanzania just opened its new chancery building in Washington, D.C. (1232 22nd Street, NW) and President Kikwete met with President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton during his visit to the U.S.

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New HIV/AIDS Care and Treatment Center at Mount Meru Regional Hospital

Arusha Times, Tanzania: Centre Promises New Lease of Life Amid HIV/Aids Threat

Arusha Times, Tanzania: Centre Promises New Lease of Life Amid HIV/Aids Threat

A new HIV/AIDS Care and Treatment Center has just opened at Mount Meru Regional Hospital in the Arusha Municipal, near AIDSTanzania’s community partner the U.A.A.C.C.  The center is funded through PEPFAR (U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief), and it will provide services to the 1.3 million residents of five districts of the Arusha Region and the neighboring Manyara Region.

It will be exciting to see if this new center creates any changes in HIV prevalence or in the perception of availability of treatment options in this area. The Arusha region is a large, diverse region with many people living far away from cities where treatment can be accessed. Perhaps this is an opportunity for a partnership between this Center, AIDSTanzania, and the U.A.A.C.C. in the future…

This Center is sure to create positive change in the lives of those living with HIV in Tanzania and hopefully have an impact on prevention as well.

Read the article here.

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AIDS in America

An article on an important study of HIV infection rates and the treatment of AIDS in America, specifically within the African American population.

UPDATE: The CDC reports that the US underestimated the amount of new HIV cases by over 16,000.

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