Nutritional care to people living with HIV/AIDS in Bunda Township

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Southern New Hampshire University
The HIV/AIDS pandemic is a global crisis with impacts that will be felt for decades to come. According to the estimates projected in the UNAIDS 2000 and 2003 AIDS Update December; forty million people were living with HIV/AIDS as of December 2003, of whom 2.5 million are children below fifteen years of age. During year 2003, 44.9 million people were already infected with HIV and three million died of AIDS. Also in year 2004 HIV/AIDS killed more than three million people and nearly five million people became infected (UNAIDS/WHO2004). More than twenty five million of these live in Sub-Sahara Africa, where Tanzania alone had 157,173 people living with HIV/AIDS; Mara Region had 3216 and Bunda district had 1057 as of December 2003. Recognizing this situation; several practitioners, Institutions, groups of persons and individuals are joining into the efforts of limiting or minimizing the speed of the sick to progress from HIV to AIDS disease. These efforts are being done through application of the antiretroviral drugs and utilization of good diet combined with recommended herbs that are immune stimulant and/or antioxidant in nature. Bunda Women Savings and Credit Cooperative Society has also opted joining an hand by establishing a nutritional care project to serve people living with HIV/AIDS in Bunda Township who according to the current statistics are now amounting to 482. The purpose of this document therefore is to justify the relevance and validity of establishing a project of this kind in the area and also to see whether the project is addressing the needs of the targeted community. In conducting the research to testify the above; several sources of information have been contacted; including literature reviews, various respondents in the area who involved -society members themselves; government officials; partner NGOS which are already working with the affected, as well as the society committee members. Several trial questions have been developed and used either to lead focus groups discussions or mailed to respondents; the answers of which, after the detailed analysis have enabled the research team to come up with findings and recommendations that appear in chapter four of the document. Several findings have been learned out of the study as they appear in the document; but briefly the research confirmed to have NGOS in Bunda District engaged in provision of various HIV/AIDS related services to the affected community, but none of the same was engaged in nutritional case services. This immediately indicates a need of having an organ, established to take care of nutritional care services so as to assist in filling the vacuum. The research also noted the high commitment of the society members have in preparing themselves to establish a nutritional care project. This was evidenced by contributions raised by the members, where as of now; more than Ten million Tanzanian Shillings have been set aside to assist the take off of the project - and lastly The findings predict good marketability of the products that will be produced by the project. This was evidenced by responses of the NGOS, where 77.8% of the total respondents confirmed the market. Basing on the above findings; the study confirms the establishment of a nutritional care project and recommends a proposal on nutritional care (which appears in chapter five) be developed to aid the Society in securing some of the items (like machineries) that are expensive for the society to afford. Instruments used in conducting the research appear at the end. (Author abstract)