The COVida — Together for Children* project improves the health, nutritional status and well-being of orphans and vulnerable children in Mozambique. COVida increases community capacity to protect and care for orphans and vulnerable children through the use of existing health and social services. The project also promotes an environment that fosters the physical health and social and emotional development of children, with the goal of reducing the risk of HIV infection.
COVida is a six-year project, funded through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) under the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). It is implemented by FHI 360 and consortium partners, including CARE and more than 30 local implementing partners. A key component of COVida is the Promising Partners initiative, which is designed to prepare local implementing partners to become prime partners who directly manage USAID funds.
The project is working in 72 PEPFAR-priority districts in Mozambique to implement family-centered case management for children and adolescents living with HIV and their families. COVida operationalizes the guidelines and approaches approved by the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Action and the Ministry of Health. In addition to providing direct services, COVida's community case workers refer families to other government and nongovernment services. Through strategies for household economic strengthening and early childhood development, the project addresses the root causes of vulnerability as well as immediate needs.
COVida also implements the DREAMS (Determined, Resilient, Empowered, AIDS-free, Mentored and Safe) project in 11 districts in Mozambique. This comprehensive initiative provides layers of support to adolescent girls and young women at risk of HIV. Mentors from the participants' communities facilitate group discussions on topics that include sexual and reproductive health, gender norms, HIV, financial literacy and other economic strengthening activities The mentors also provide individual counseling and referrals to health services and savings groups. DREAMS offers sessions for parents and community members to engage them in shifting social norms around gender roles and violence.
*The project is locally known as COVida – Juntos Pelas Crianças. It was formerly named Service Delivery and Support to Orphans and Vulnerable Children (SDS-OVC).