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Walvis Bay Corridor Group gets help from GIZ

Representative of the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany and Chief Executive Officer of the Walvis Bay Corridor Group, Johnny Smith at the signing agreement last week. (Photograph by Melba Chipepo)

Representative of the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany and Chief Executive Officer of the Walvis Bay Corridor Group, Johnny Smith at the signing agreement last week. (Photograph by Melba Chipepo)

The Walvis Bay Corridor Group (WBCG) last week announced a N$900,000 funding agreement between itself and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft fuer Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ),
According to Johnny Smith. The WBCG and the GIZ have been in partnership since 2003 when the corridor developer started an HIV help desk and have since worked with people in the transport sector on HIV awareness. The two partners have also developed mobile clinics in Walvis Bay, Katima Mulilo and in Oshikango to ensure that long-distance truck drivers have access to health services even beyond the workplace.
Through its HIV/AIDS interventions, the WBCG has contributed immensely to the national HIV/AIDS response programm. Last year the project reached out to 2853 transport workers (823 truckers plus 2030 general transport workers) with HIV and general wellness screening services. Out of this target, 504 workers tested positive for HIV and were referred to care and support services. Other achievements include the development of a 5-year Strategic Plan Document (2013 to 2017) to guide HIV/AIDS and Wellness response for which the GIZ is funding N$900 000.
Comprehensive workplace wellness programmes have been developed for about 60% of the transport member companies. This initiative improved collaborations and coordination with relevant stakeholders including the Ministry of Health and Social Services, the Ministry of Works and Transport, the GIZ, the Society for Family Health, NABCOA and Dessert Soul. The focus is to provide the necessary support and to facilitate the development of Workplace Wellness Programmes in the transport sector. Another achievement is the training of over 150 transport workers as Peer Educators.
By implementing HIV/AIDS workplace and corridor wellness interventions, the Corridor Group said it contributes to the goals and outcomes as outlined by the National Strategic Framework on HIV/AIDS response in Namibia (2010/11 to 2015/16) and it demonstrates a multi-sectoral approach led by the HIV and AIDS Wellness Strategy for the Public Works and Transport Sector 2013 to 2015/16.

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