Agnes Sileti

The Families Matter! Program (FMP) being is implemented by Mavambo Orphan Care in Goromonzi and Harare districts. The program is designed to help parents overcome common parent-child communication barriers – such as embarrassment and lack of knowledge, skills and confidence – and to enhance parenting skills.

FMP seeks to delay sexual debut and decrease sexual risk behaviors through positive parent-child communication about HIV, sexually transmitted infections, and pregnancy prevention.

Caregivers who partook in Wave 6 of the Families Matter! Program (FMP) under MCV project have shown a profound commitment by attending the program and embracing their critical role in helping their children develop good conducts.

Speaking to 57 year old Agnes Sileti from Goromonzi District, she attested that she faced challenges in raising her three grandchildren soon after the passing of both their parents.

Through the FMP I was natured on effective communication skills and positive approach to children and how it guarantees future progressive engagements with the children. It was difficult to address my three grandchildren on issues to do with sex or HIV, especially with my eighteen year old grandson who is positive. At one point he had an infection on his genital area and I was able to convince him to go to the clinic and get treatment. Before the knowledge I acquired from the FMP I do not think I would have been able to address the problem effectively,” said Agnes.

The other challenge that Agnes faced was the issue of disclosure. She could not be brave enough to tell her grandson that he was HIV positive ever since she took him in at the age of 14, despite being on antiretroviral drugs. He had no idea why he was taking the medication.

The program opened my eyes and redirected my thinking. I was able to disclose to my grandson about his HIV status which had been a burden I carried for years.  I explained how this was not the end of the world and I also took him to the clinic for additional counseling,” she said.

Mavambo Orphan Care implemented the Families Matter Program in Harare, Chitungwiza and Goromonzi Districts reaching 9823 beneficiaries from wave 1 up to 6.