41-year-old John is a volunteer care worker in Pimai, Zimbabwe committed to transforming the hopeless situations of vulnerable children in his community. Pimai is a poor rural village surrounded by tea and coffee farms approximately 130 km from Mutare, Zimbabwe. Many of Pimai’s population are families who fled Mutare after falling ill from HIV/AIDS and becoming too sick to work. Desperately seeking a place to feed and house their families, they moved out to the rural village. With the inevitably high death rate among many of those patients, scores of children have been orphaned and left in extreme vulnerability.
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In the past we have done two conferences, both in South Africa. An Africa conference with our African service center partners and an international conference with our African partners and many international churches and donors as well.
This year instead of having the conferences in just South Africa we will be holding four regional conferences that will be open to anyone interested in attending. The Hands at Work family is growing at a rapid rate which means that it is becoming increasingly difficult to get everyone to South Africa. This means we can bring the conferences closer to home for the Service Centres involved, also allowing our international visitors flexibility and possibly allow them to attend in the country of their interest. In the past we have only been able to have a very small number of community based organizations (CBO) representatives present. By holding regional conferences it will also enable greater CBO participation and give more people exposure to the vision of Hands at Work.
The conference schedule is as follows:
South Africa & Swaziland | March 24-27 | Hands at Work in Africa near White River, South Africa
Zambia, Democratic Republic of Congo & Malawi | April 15-18 | Luanshya, Zambia
Mozambique & Zimbabwe | April 22-25 | TBD
Nigeria | May 20-23 | Lagos, Nigeria
We are excited about the new opportunities that hosting regional conferences will bring. All are welcome to come and be a part of the different regional conferences. If you are interested in attending or helping fund the conferences please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
View more of last year's conference in photos
We successfully ran a training workshop for the care workers in Sakubva, which has subsequently resulted in improved relationship building between the care workers, OVCs and patients/primary guardians. The training was also successfully closed with a ceremony that saw the caregivers being awarded with medical aid kits. We managed to invite local authorities, including the Councillor for the Sakubva ward, the Deputy Director of the Mutare City Health Department, one of our trustees, Dr. Geoff Foster, and our country representative, Emily Dinhira, all of whom were present and spoke at the ceremony.