Humana People to People

Humana People to People

Opinion: We can address, control, and mitigate tuberculosis. Here's how.



The major global health crises of recent decades have, at times, felt insurmountable. The onset of the HIV epidemic in the late 1970s and the 2014 West African Ebola outbreak are prime examples. Yet through concerted and sustained collaborative action, in significant part led by civil society and the affected communities, such crises have over time been addressed, controlled, and increasingly mitigated.


Tuberculosis is not one such crisis. While the number of deaths globally from tuberculosis fell by 22 percent between 2000 and 2015, TB is now responsible for more deaths than either HIV or malaria annually. In 2015, TB was one of the top 10 causes of death worldwide, with an estimated 10.4 million new cases across the globe. That’s roughly one new case for every 721 people on the planet.


What’s more, a rising number of these cases coincide with infection with the better-known global killer, HIV/AIDS, with incidence of co-infection directly linked to elevated mortality rates. In 2015, 1.8 million people died from TB, of which 0.4 million were also HIV positive.


Yet unlike AIDS, TB has to some extent slipped under the radar of global public awareness, receiving a mere fraction of the international efforts dedicated to combatting other major epidemics in the past 30 years. Greater political will, collaboration, and international leadership would all help to tackle TB, as would greater funding and research into new drug-resistant strains of TB and the complexities of co-infection. But, in the absence of a directed focus from the international community, TB prevention has fallen largely into the hands of the medical community, with little investment from either civil society or affected communities that will be critical in preventing the spread of the disease in the future.


These groups were, and remain, at the forefront of promoting sustainable approaches to health issues and pandemics across the world — most notably in relation to halting the seemingly exponential spread of HIV infection. The Federation Humana People to People developed and implemented the ground-breaking Total Control of the Epidemic across 12 countries, reaching more than 6.5 million people and acting as a model for HIV prevention efforts across the globe.


A similar approach is desperately needed to tackle the TB crisis. While greater global investment into research and treatment is essential, the factors preventing a greater reduction in global incidents of TB must be addressed at a more localized level. Stigma, mistrust, and false beliefs among affected populations can only be tackled through direct engagement, the development of trust and, crucially, tried and tested approaches to disease prevention in such communities.





The good news is we know how to do this. The success, albeit belatedly, in tackling the HIV epidemic, provides us with a replicable and scalable model. And there are clear indications that implementation of this model can deliver results.


Let’s take Mozambique as an example. Maputo-province and Maputo-city are among the highest HIV/TB burden regions in Mozambique with HIV prevalence in adults around 23 percent and 17 percent, respectively. Using the approach taken to tackle HIV as a model, ADPP Mozambique has been implementing two community-based projects in Maputo province, aiming to protect people living with HIV from TB and avoidable mortality.


The key elements of these programs are field counselors and supervisors, in collaboration with local public health facilities, and engaging with local communities door-to-door to build trust and understanding. The programs utilize local networks and knowledge to target households that are known to be at high risk of TB, screening individuals, and providing them with the appropriate health support mechanisms as required. The programs empower individuals to spread the message, and to act as a conduit for engaging other, often harder-to-reach individuals and communities. Crucially, the program uses a unique IT-based mobile application to track patients in the community and link them to their nearest health-facilities, facilitating follow-ups, monitoring, and wider data-driven community engagement strategies.





And it has shown impressive results. Between 2015-16, the projects in Maputo tested 247,342 people at high risk of HIV, of which 21,348 were identified as sero-positive; 97.5 percent of those identified as HIV positive were also screened for TB, leading to 747 people being connected to TB treatment. This approach ensures that people know their status — of both HIV and TB — equipping them with the knowledge and the impetus to do something about it. The highly contagious nature of TB renders prevention an efficient investment — with every person treated for TB, you are directly contributing to preventing the spread of infection to other family and community members. The multiplier effect on investment, paired with the urgency of the epidemic, should be enough to propel this issue to center stage of the public health policy debate.


At the Moscow Ministerial Conference in November, and the U.N. high-level meeting in 2018, we will be advocating for firmer commitments from civil society, governments, and international institutions, and the widespread implementation of an accountability framework in TB prevention. We believe that staunch commitment, together with solid mechanisms for accountability, can put an end to this avoidable yet deadly illness.


Approaches involving meaningful community engagement, based on tried and tested methods and models and working collaboratively with affected communities, must be prioritized, funded, and replicated if we are to break the back of the TB epidemic. At-risk communities deserve an approach that empowers them, consults with them, and strengthens their ability to lead the fight against TB. We cannot afford another lost decade.





DAPP Zimbabwe receives an award at the TB Gala function organized by STOP TB Partnership in Mexico

Congratulations to DAPP Zimbabwe for being the winner of the Partners’ Engagement Prize category at the ongoing Lung Conference in Mexico. The prize was after a random survey made in 2017 where DAPP Zimbabwe took part.

For the second consecutive year, the Stop TB Partnership handed out awards for organizations exceeding in TB excellence during a TB Awards Gala, which took place in Guadalajara on the sidelines of the Union World Conference on Lung Health.

A total of 11 prizes in six different categories were awarded by different Stop TB Partnership Secretariat teams representing its programmatic work to include the Civil Society Movement, the Global Drug Facility (GDF), TB REACH, the Paradigm Shift in TB, World TB Day and Partners Engagement. The gala dinner event which had over 130 partners present including people affected by TB, communities and civil society, and representatives from TB programmes, was officiated in the presence of the Guadalajara city authorities.

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World Teachers’ Day 2017 - Teaching in Freedom, Empowering Teachers

World Teachers’ Day 2017 - Teaching in Freedom, Empowering Teachers


World Teachers’ Day 2017 will be celebrated under the theme “Teaching in Freedom, Empowering Teachers”, echoing the 2015 theme that followed the adoption of the new Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) in September 2015. At that time the teacher empowerment was reaffirmed as a top priority in all education and development strategies.

World Teachers’ Day is celebrated annually worldwide and brings together teachers, governments, multi- and bilateral organizations, civil society, private sectors, and experts in the field of teaching. With the adoption of SDG 4 on education, and the dedicated target 4.c recognizing teachers as key to the achievement of the 2030 Education Agenda, it has become the occasion to mark achievements and reflect on ways to counter the remaining challenges for the promotion of the teaching profession, like the acute shortage of teachers.  

Indeed, according to the UNESCO Institute of Statistics, the world needs 69 Million teachers if we are to achieve universal primary and secondary education by 2030. The same article shows that the greatest teacher shortages are in sub-Saharan Africa, which needs a total of about 17 million teachers to achieve universal primary and secondary education by 2030.

As the world commemorates World Teachers’ Day, Humana People to People would like to share the impact it has made in training teachers in Africa and India. For the past 25 years, Humana People to People members have been training primary school teachers who are dedicated to offer professional teaching in those communities having high illiteracy rates in Sub-Saharan Africa as well as India. The indicator for SDG 4.c states a goal by 2030, to substantially increase the supply of qualified teachers, including through international cooperation for teacher training in developing countries, especially least developed countries and small island developing States. Focus on training primary school teachers becomes a crucial component in achieving the 2030 Agenda. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals all integrate education as a driving force in transforming lives and engage every person in an effort to leave no-one behind. 

To Humana People to People, education then becomes the cog driving the wheel of development and thus teacher training is a major component of striving towards reaching the SDGs in general and the SDGs in education in particular.

The teacher training program equips the teachers with requisite teaching capacity in the form of teaching pedagogy, efficiency in teaching utilizing limited teaching resources, and practicing child-friendly and child centered teaching approaches. Our teachers are trained in community development, as most of the rural African settings are in need of locally driven development, key in facilitating children’s better participation in the schooling process. Thus engaging the wider community becomes part of making it possible for parents and teacher to center efforts on creating the necessary conditions to support children’s education.



The importance of high-quality teaching in shaping pupils’ educational experiences is increasingly being recognized and thus the attention to teacher education. Improving education quality requires far more than just having enough teachers in the education system: teachers need to be trained initially, then supported through professional development and they need to be motivated and willing to continually improve their teaching practices. To fully understand the challenge ahead, it is helpful to know the impact of trained teachers in each country and how many additional trained teachers are needed. 

Since 1993 when the first Humana People to People teacher training college started in Mozambique, more than 35 000 primary school teachers have been trained by Humana People to People members in Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea Bissau, India, Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia. By end of the year 2016, a total of 12 500 student teachers were enrolled at 53 teacher training colleges in the mentioned countries. The training seeks to contribute to increasing the proportion of teachers in primary education who have received at least the minimum organized teacher training (e.g. pedagogical training) pre-service or in-service required for teaching at the relevant level in a given country.  

The Humana People to People Teacher Training Program provides quality inputs, which, coupled with the government curriculum for teacher education, create teachers who teach with passion and proficiency and are equipped with knowledge of the subject matter. The educational program uses a unique digitally based pedagogical framework called Doctrine of Modern Method (DMM), which puts the student-teacher as the driving force in his or her learning and makes both students and teachers responsible for the standard of education and its delivery structure.

Thus the student-teachers experience in their own training the importance of being active in the learning process. They are encouraged to transfer this personal experience onto their own teaching, so as to make the child active in the learning, with the teacher creating an environment that facilitates success for each child. 

The digital setup helps the student-teachers grasp the use of technology in education. Use of computers is keenly promoted as a part of the program and many aspects of teacher training, including preparation of teaching and learning materials.

The education includes practice periods in primary schools, where the would-be teacher learns the skills of teaching and becomes equipped to meet the challenges of being a teacher in a rural setting. The student-teacher in teaching practice receives supervision and guidance support from experienced teachers. Parallel to the teaching practice, there are studies in didactics and subject matters. A lot of what is being learnt theoretically is translated into practical demonstration. Observations are made by both the local primary school headmaster and the supervisor from the Teacher Training College for further mentorship of the student-teacher. The student-teachers also carry out community outreach activities, among them getting to know the life conditions of the parents, discussing with them about equal access to education for boys and girls, making campaigns about ending child marriage, HIV and AIDS prevention messages, and interventions targeting water and sanitation improvement in the nearby community. 



Humana People to People members are increasingly providing opportunities for continuous professional development for active teachers; specifically, although not limited to, graduates of Humana Teacher Training Colleges. In its early stages, this effort essentially consists of a network for Teacher Training College graduates and their peers, through which they can receive ongoing support and training, as well as connect with each other to share knowledge and experiences. Network members attend weekend or holiday training sessions where they refresh their skills and knowledge, update themselves on content and share what has worked in their own practice to the benefit of others.

Training sessions build on the methodology used in pre-service training with a learner-centred approach. Teachers in the program are encouraged to take the lead in their respective communities and promote improved learning conditions at their schools.

An inclusive approach towards education as well as increased access to employment opportunities is essential to not only ensure the human rights of people with disabilities, but also for communities to be able to benefit from the unique skills and talents that they possess. In Mozambique, three colleges regularly enroll students with disabilities, and ADPP Mozambique, a member of Humana People to People, has been instrumental in breaking down barriers and encouraging more inclusive community environments for both pupils and teachers with disabilities.

This has been achieved through collaboration with other organizations which specialize in advocacy for people with disabilities.

Nelson Mandela, former President of South Africa said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” True to the statement is the support needed to have capable teachers who are dedicated and motivated to practice teaching as well as carry out other activities supporting community development. 

Humana People to People is committed to its role in the education sector of the countries where member associations operate. Achieving quality inclusive education for all children and learners is a highly ambitious goal, yet imperative if we are to achieve the Sustainable Development Agenda. 

To achieve the Agenda, intentional and intensive efforts will be required of donors, governments, civil society, academia, communities, parents and children; with each stakeholder playing their part. Humana People to People is confident in its role and objectives in the coming years, and looks forward to the increased investment, collaboration and political action that the new Agenda demands.


Written 29 September 2017 




Bicycle race at the Vocational School in Guinea-Bissau.

60 energetic students from the Vocational School in Guinea-Bissau enrolled immediately when Lucas Ehrenhaus, a volunteer English teacher at the school, proposed a quick little bicycle race to celebrate that they had received bicycles and bicycle clothes from UFF-Humana in Denmark.
The race took place on Saturday the 15th of July  between 6 teams, each with 10 participants.

Each participant drove a short distance of 150 meters of red dirt road and back, before the next man on the team took over the bicycle. All the students were very eager to get started. However, the race was delayed a little due to rain and a subsequent bicycle check, where several tires had to be pumped. Eventually, bicycle helmets were distributed. The start was explosive when the race finally started.

It was so powerfull that a chain broke instantly and the first team was out of the race. When most teams had started their 4th rider came the first accident, luckily without any injuries. Later a team was hit by another cyclist during a rider shift, which also caused a damaged bike. As the race was near the end, 3 teams were clearly leading, until 2 of the 3 riders lost control of the bike before the finishing line.
It was a really fun race, says Lucas Ehrenhaus, English teacher and organizer of the event. For many of the participants it was the first time they tried to race, and despite some chaotic episodes, everyone was having fun. The cheers from the spectators were overwhelming and there were many laughs. The cycle race ended with the award of refreshments to all participants.

UFF-Humana in Denmark sends used school furniture, bicycles, computers, sewing machines, hospital equipment, etc. For development projects in Guinea-Bissau.
The consignments are packed by the Danish Relief Group in Næstved.
The fund Recycling for development finances the freight.
The organisation ADPP Guinea-Bissau organises the distribution of the materials
From the shipment in June 2017, the Vocational School received 16 bicycles from the Danish Relief Group and bicycle clothes from the pedal athletes in Fredensborg.


DAPP Zimbabwe phase-out the Community-WASH Project in Zimbabwe 


The Minister of State for Provincial Affairs for Manicaland Province, Honorable Mandiitawepi Chimene officially handed over the   1.5 million USAID funded Community Water Supply, Sanitation, Hygiene, and Natural Resources Management project (C-WASH) project which has improved the health of 53,000 Zimbabweans from Chimanimani, Chipinge, Mutasa, and Nyanga.


In a speech read on her behalf at the project closeout event held Sherukuru Secondary School in Mutasa Minister Chimene commended DAPP Zimbabwe’s timely implementation of CWASH saying "the project which is in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 6, (CLEAN WATER AND SANITATION) identifies with the needs of the most needy in the rural areas of the province through efforts targeting strengthening the community’s capacity in areas of Water management, sanitation and hygiene management and Natural resources management”.  She praised the Training for Transformation initiative saying it not only develops a sense of ownership and responsibility among community members but ensures sustainability of the project beyond the funding period.


C-WASH is a USAID-funded activity to improve the health and nutrition status of Zimbabweans by addressing water, sanitation, and hygiene challenges. Through C-WASH, USAID and DAPP Zimbabwe assisted communities to rehabilitate 237 community boreholes, establish 90 water pumps, construct 350 cattle drinking troughs, and conduct water quality testing on 327 boreholes and wells. The project supported the construction of 20 latrines at 20 schools using a new design that meets the needs of girls and boys and people with disabilities. C-WASH also supported 1 120 families to build latrines at their homesteads. In total, 53 000 Zimbabweans now have access to clean water and sanitation facilities. C-WASH was implemented from 2015 to 2017 in four districts: Chimanimani, Chipinge, Mutasa, and Nyanga. 



These achievements were highlighted by beneficiaries who shared their most significant change stories at the event.  Notable was the impact of the project on pregnant mothers who now have ready access to clean and safe water, enabling hygienic environment and improved sanitation facilities. “Visiting the swat-hole toilets was an unbearable experience for expecting mothers while walking long distances to fetch clean water was equally painful.   We are grateful to DAPP Zimbabwe for bringing better toilets with raised seats that make it easy to use during pregnancy” said Melania Ziyambe of Mugari Village in Chipinge.  She added that the C-WASH project also eliminated chances of their new born children catching diseases as they now have access to clean and safe water.


Students from Sherukuru Secondary school expressed their gratitude to DAPP Zimbabwe and USAID saying their new toilet facilities were designed to cater for disabled students as well as their menstrual hygiene needs. “We are happy with our new toilets that allow us comfort while we are going through our menstruation period. We really appreciate that some of our disabled classmates will be able to also use the toilets without assistance” said the school Head girl. 


 Addressing the same gathering DAPP Zimbabwe Chairman Ib Hansen, said “Clean water and sanitation are essential for human health and nutrition, food security, and economic growth. We are proud to work in partnership with these communities to improve sanitation and hygiene infrastructure in a way that will be sustainable over the long term.” He added that water remains a finite resource that needs conservation and called on the 53,000 beneficiaries to continue protecting and conserving water through upholding the principles and best practices they were taught by DAPP Zimbabwe and Zim-AHEAD.


USAID Zimbabwe shared their joy with the communities for the successful implementation of the project and reiterated their commitment to the people of Zimbabwe. USAID Zimbabwe Acting Mission Director Julie Nenon said: “USAID stands with the people of Zimbabwe to enable families to live healthier and more resilient lives. The successes we celebrate today have been made possible by the unity and hard work of the men, women, youth, and leaders in these communities.”



Running under the theme "C-WASH for sustainable water and sanitation facilities for communities", the event brought together over 1,000 community members from the four districts (Chipinge, Chimanimani, Mutasa and Nyanga), government officials, Schools, USAID staff, other implementing partners and above all the beneficiaries to celebrate the achievements of C-WASH project.


DAPP Zimbabwe and USAID remain committed to make achievable the UN SDG 6 goal whose vision is to ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all.