The COVida — Together for Children project improves the health, nutritional status and well-being of orphans and vulnerable children in Mozambique. To achieve this, COVida increases community capacity to protect and care for orphans and vulnerable children through the use of existing health and social services. COVida 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 five-year project, funded through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and supported by the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). It is implemented by FHI 360 and consortium partners, including CARE, N’weti, Palladium, PATH and World Vision.
The project is working in 72 PEPFAR-priority districts in Mozambique to develop interventions that operationalize the guidelines and approaches approved by the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Action and emphasize holistic, family-centered support to children and caregivers. In addition to referring families to services provided by the project, COVida also refers 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. The project team collaborates with government partners and implements through local organizations and community-based committees. FHI 360 and its partners provide financial and technical support to these organizations.
COVida works with community-based organizations to recruit, train and manage activistas (community outreach workers) in comprehensive case management, who in turn work with health units and families to conduct individual needs assessments for each child in an identified household. This comprehensive needs assessment covers health, nutrition, economic situation, education, psychosocial support, legal protection and shelter. Once an assessment is complete, the activista develops an individualized care plan with the family and provides direct services or referrals to meet their needs and help the families become stronger and more resilient.