"HIV/AIDS is the
- Susan Hunter, anthropologist-demographer,
March 20, 2008:
Mzuzu, Malawi, Africa. SAFE's Director of Education, Moira Chimombo, was in Mzuzu last week to finalize the development of a Pastoral and Congregational Care Training Manual, she wrote with input from various workshops for the pastors, women's leaders, and youth leaders in the churches, including Presbyterian (CCAP--the main impetus), United Methodist, Assemblies of God, Roman Catholic. Now, she reports, the church leaders have a resource book with information on all aspects of HIV/AIDS: transmission, prevention, treatment, and impact mitigation. They also have a range of training activities to help them train members of their congregations.
February 26, 2008:
Zomba, Malawi, Africa. The first-year (freshmen) students at Chancelor College (University of Malawi) are given a three-week orientation to life in college. For the first time this year, all six, two-hour sessions of our "WHY WAIT? Truth for Youth" course for college students were included. Of the 579 students listed as accepted for courses at Chancellor College, 495 attended at least one of the sessions, and almost 75% attended at least 5 of the 6 sessions. The feedback has been very favorable, and we're looking forward to seeing more positive long term benefits, with fewer dropping out due to behavior or academic problems induced by alcohol or drug abuse, or promiscuity.
November 18, 2007:
Lesotho, Africa. Prof Moira Chimombo, WHY WAIT?'s Director of Education spoke to a group of 49 National University of Lesotho (NUL) student leaders on HIV/AIDS in the university. She learned from the participants (the Vice-Chancellor and Dean of Students were also present) NUL is in the process of developing a university level HIV/AIDS policy. Voluntary Counseling and Testing is available, but many students distrust the level of confidentiality of the nurses/counselors. ARVs are due to be available soon.
Moira conducted with the students the simulation "If pillows could talk ..." (adapted from Focus on the Family's No apologies: The truth about life, love, and sex), after which she showed the video Silent Epidemic, which gives graphic images of the signs and symptoms of numerous sexually transmitted infections, such as gonorrhea, syphilis, chancroid, and of course AIDS, in Africa. (The video was shot in Kenya and Malawi.)
The speaker after Professor Chimombo, Dr Akpan, spoke in more detail on sexually transmitted infections. The subsequent discussion was very open. It is hoped that NUL will be interested in having SAFE train lecturers to run the tertiary WW? course next year.
November 11-15, 2007:
Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The Association of Christian Schools International conference in Francophone, Africa was attended by 57 participants from 10 countries: Central African Republic, Chad, DRC, France, Gabon, Malawi, Mali, Niger, Rwanda, and South Africa.
Prof Moira Chimombo, WHY WAIT?'s Director of Education gave presentations on Biblical worldview, How to teach Christianly, and the integration of Biblical worldview into all subjects in the curriculum. Moira reports,
I talked to Monseigneur Nyamuke about the need for Christian teacher training in the DRC and learned that the Christian universities do NOT have Faculties of Education. It appears there is only professional secondary teacher training and certification, not at primary level. In discussing with Gavin Brettenny (Harvest Institute, Port Elizabeth, South Africa) and Samson Makhado (Regional Director, ACSI-Africa), we thought maybe initially Harvest Institute could offer a certificate, while waiting for the universities to open Faculties of Education. I expressed my willingness to serve as a “consultant.”
"On 15 November, I presented the Morning Devotion at Ecole de Shaumba, to 1200 girls—I took the mirror activity, the story of the leper (Mark 1:40-45), and “you’re special” from Year 9, Lesson 1. I presented the WW? PowerPoint (in French) again on 15 November, to the conference. I then identified people who volunteered to be translators of WW? curriculum (Jerome Manzeze from DRC [Years 9-12], Jean Balizou from Central African Republic [Years 5-8], and Anne-Marie Jayer from Mali [Teacher’s Handbook]) to translate WW? materials.
"I spent time talking to Samson Makhado (Regional Director, ACSI-Africa) and Anna-Marie Russell (ACSI) about Christian schools in Malawi and elsewhere in Africa, and also how to get WHY WAIT? into Christian schools in the whole of Africa. In particular, Samson is arranging to draw up a partnership agreement between ACSI-Africa and SAFE with a view to WW? becoming ACSI-Africa’s Life Skills curriculum in Africa. He also wants us (i.e. SAFE with ACSI-Africa) to get funding for printing WW? in French for Francophone Africa and in English for Anglophone Africa.
November 9, 2007:
Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Prof Moira Chimombo, WHY WAIT?'s Director of Education, presented WW? PowerPoint (in French) to Pre-Conference of 150+ School Principals and Education Coordinators in the afternoon.
October 31, 2007:
Zomba, Malawi. This evening on the Chancellor College campus of the University of Malawi, 121 of the best and brightest of the student body received certificates recognizing their completion of the WHY WAIT? Truth for Youth college level course. In addition, 47 of this number were also received Certificates for completing the Why Wait? Teacher Training and received their training manuals.
It was an energetic evening which featured impassioned speeches by 2 students, the president of the university and WHY WAIT?'s Education Director, Prof Moira Chimombo, preceeding the presentation of certificates.
WHY WAIT? Africa was initially presented in 1992 at the first annual weeklong Uganda Youth Conference, hosted by First Lady Janet Museveni. In 1993, the Malawi Ministry of Education requested Sub-Saharan Africa Family Enrichment (SAFE) to develop an African-oriented curriculum addressing sexual abstinence, life skills and character development that could be used in schools to help address HIV/AIDS. The program was launched nationally at a convocation of 3,000 students and 500 teachers hosted by State President Bakili Muluzi at Sanjika Palace in 1995.