This year 2012, marks our first fives years since we first opened our offices in Murewa in 2007, a year after the death of Mbuya Rozaria Marumisa Dizha. It is true that where there is a will there is a way. The moment of loss and pain turned out to be the moment of inspiration and innovation. In death of a great woman leader and the public testimonies of her life was the seed that we all watered and became today’s thriving Rozaria Memorial Trust (RMT).
Today, RMT is a recognized and treasured organization providing services to children and families affected by HIV in 31 villages of Murewa District in Zimbabwe. We have reached more than 10,000 people consistently with information on health and our advocacy for education. We partner with seven schools in the district and collaborate with tree health centres.
In national, regional and global advocacy spaces, RMT has found its voice and its place at the table, advocating for the situation of women and children in resource poor communities. For instance, we contributed at the International AIDS Conference in Vienna in 2010 on a special panel on children affected by HIV, community responses and challenges and jointly hosted a side events at the UN Commission on the Status of Women. In national dialogues, RMT brings that unique and important perspective of rural communities of women and young people directly impacted by poverty and marginalization.
This year, we will continue our support for children living with HIV and those affected; to have access to education, health and nutrition in our community. We will contribute to the global challenge of “getting to zero”, that no child should be born with HIV by 2015. For this happen, we must work with young women and especially those of reproductive age group living with HIV. It requires male responsibility and integrated efforts for information and services in prevention, care and support.
In addition, this is a year for growth and long term visioning for our next 10 year programme, to position the Trust as a leading organisation for children and young people nationally and regionally. We will undertake a district survey for children with disabilities to help us generate the evidence and the entry points for services and advocacy. We invite friends and partners to join us. This is new area of work, and there are very few organisations in Murewa district supporting children and young people with disabilities. We have posted our call on Global Giving to enable friends and partners to join us.
Investing in education and technology especially for young people is a significant way of rebuilding communities. As a Trust, we will partner with Magaya Old Students Association and the communities at large in their special programme of “Restore the Glory”, a multi-faced initiative to rehabilitate Magaya school to a position of excellence with quality education. The plan is to strengthen the school resource centre/library and introducing ICT training for young people in and out of school. This is the school that Mbuya Rozaria attended in the 1930s, and it remains the nucleus of our identity and our community.
Rozaria Memorial Trust Board, staff and volunteers, do expresses its appreciation to all partners who supported in the last five years, and invites you and others to join us in the journey for the next decade.
Ms Nyaradzayi Gumbonzvanda
RMT, Founder & Chairperson