Since International Medical Corps’ operations began in Zimbabwe in 2009, we have delivered quality health services and reduced the spread of waterborne diseases by increasing access to clean water and improving hygiene practices. We helped to address the 2008-2009 cholera epidemic in Zimbabwe by implementing a comprehensive package of health, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) interventions. Today, International Medical Corps’ activities in Zimbabwe are being implemented through the Amalima program; a five-year USAID/Food for Peace-funded development food assistance program. Amalima draws its name from the Ndebele word for the social contract whereby families come together to help each other engage in productive activities such as land cultivation, livestock tending, and asset building. The program’s goal is to sustainably improve household food and nutrition security in a country where one in three children suffers from chronic malnutrition. Our operations will cover some of the most food insecure districts in Matabeleland North and Matabeleland South provinces. Targeting 229,654 beneficiaries, especially pregnant and breastfeeding women and children under the age of 2, the program emphasizes the promotion of the ‘1000 days’ approach, household dietary diversity, and participatory health and hygiene education.
True to our mission, International Medical Corps is also training community health workers on topics such as nutrition assessment, counselling and support to strengthen community nutrition surveillance. Through all aspects of programming, behavior change communication activities will reinforce sustained health and nutrition actions. Our WASH work also focuses on participatory community engagement where our activities will support improved behavior change at the community-level.
Overall, International Medical Corps’ activities are supportive of the government policies (such as the National Food and Nutrition Security Policy), and our work ensures collaboration with key stakeholders at all levels.
Amalima is being implemented through a consortium of six non-governmental organizations and led by CNFA, an international development organization specializing in agricultural development with experience implementing agro-dealer strengthening programs in Zimbabwe.