Annatolia Ngilichi has been a care worker for a very long time and has done so from her own will to help someone make it through sickness and pain. She indicated that she was once in a serious condition that she was thought dead and the relative were already planning the funeral arrangements. With the level of draught, poverty and marginalisation, she could not afford a proper single meal a day for her to take her HIV drugs. Josephine says, her hair fell off because of the disease progression and malnutrition. She has been bald ever since. Josephine has kept her head covered with a hat or she puts on a wig to cover her bald head.
FACT Chiredzi through partnership with Afrikagrupperna, conducted a Caring for the Care worker training as well as a care worker initiative sensitisation meeting. 30 care workers attended and Josephine was one of them. She was excited and motivated throughout the training and indicated that the training has answered a lot of questions that she had for many years.
– You people you don’t know what you have done to me. All these years I thought I did not matter. I had lost all the confidence and the hope that anyone cares about us as care workers. I was just doing it for will because someone someday did it for me. I had committed to help as well. But after the information about care work, what we are, who we are, what we deserve and who has to acknowledge us, I am the happiest woman in this community. I feel a change in my life, my spirit and my soul…. guess what I feel I have grown back all my thick black hair. I feel it’s grown to shoulder length and I can flip it back … I am so confident and I am surely going to change my step as I walk back… watch me… I feel like I am walking on heels.
The pampering, the massage, the games and the dance worked on her morale, emotional and psychological being. She is one of the many workers that have not felt cared for in a long time. Their tank was empty from giving away and in a long time, no one had given back. The government of Zimbabwe had tried to show commitment by the drafting and adopting the Care Worker policy, however, its implementation has not been done.
FACT Chiredzi has worked with care workers for more than a decade in order to promote conditions of living, human rights for people affected and infected by HIV and AIDS. The organisation also works to ensure sustainable networking with government and key stakeholders in responding to HIV and AIDS and other gender related issues, to economically empower young and adult women to improve their rights and living conditions and to promote environmentally friendly, sustainable income generating activities and fair trade in communities. They have been working to provide improved living conditions for OVC boys and girls and so as to meet their basic living rights as well as strengthening community and family members on coping mechanisms, and to attain their rights to health services.
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