Sister2Sister Mentorship Program Champions HIV Prevention, Social Change

Mentor Abigail Moyo Leads Change for Adolescents in Matebeleland North Province

by Adenike Adeodun

Abigail Moyo, actively transforming the lives of adolescents in Dete, Matebeleland North Province, stands out as a pivotal figure in her community. As a Sister2Sister mentor under the National AIDS Council (NAC) program, Moyo skillfully redirects youths’ behaviour, often stigmatized as societal misfits, through her patient and persistent approach. She focuses on adolescents aged 10–24, primarily educating them about HIV prevention.

Moyo’s mentoring has notably improved the life of Methuseli Maphisa, a 15-year-old who began using drugs at 12. Her commitment to rehabilitating youths like Methuseli showcases her determination to confront broader societal challenges such as unemployment, substance abuse, and poverty.

Moyo currently mentors a group of 50 boys and girls through an intensive year-long program, involving them in income-generating activities like gardening and chicken rearing. She stresses the importance of self-sufficiency in shielding them from sexual exploitation and HIV infection. The earnings from these activities fund the adolescents’ education and personal needs.

Moyo’s close bond with her mentees, especially Methuseli, plays a crucial role in their recovery and health improvement. She has successfully guided about 35 mentees to undergo HIV testing, promoting health awareness and safety among them.

According to a report by Newsday, the Sister2Sister program, initiated by the NAC in 2006, stands as a beacon of hope, empowering young women and enhancing their decision-making in sexual and reproductive health. The program addresses HIV prevention, and gender-based violence, and encourages responsible reproductive health choices. It aligns with Zimbabwe’s strategy to decentralize HIV prevention and care programs to the grassroots, echoing the theme of this year’s World Aids Day: Let communities lead.

In the fiscal year 2023 alone, nearly 24,400 Adolescent Girls and Young Women (AGYW) in Zimbabwe benefited from the US-led Determined, Resilient, Empowered, Aids-free, Mentored, and Safe (Dreams) initiative across 16 districts. Dreams’ support encompasses HIV prevention, PrEP, economic strengthening, educational subsidies, and services for orphans and vulnerable children, reinforcing Zimbabwe’s commitment to addressing HIV and social challenges at the community level.

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