YAAPHA is making a major impact on the lives of people in Tanzania. Connecting various social projects while campaigning for escape from ignorance, education and escape from poverty, Peter Bundala provides a detailed insight into the working and ethics of YAAPHA.
You offer a large variety of different volunteer programs today but how did YAAPHA begin?
YAAPHA began as a youth initiative to tackle social challenges, commonly drug abuse and prostitution. The objective was to educate and sanitize youth, while reducing the spread of HIV and other STDs. The organization has a youth based membership and constructive, common goals in relation to youth itself – employment, development, supporting the democratic process, legitimacy and credibility.
YAAPHA’s mission is to unite and serve indiscriminately both, male and female youth, working towards their social, economical and cultural empowerment.
We try to achieve this through the induction of productive and educational ventures, which help achieve independence and contribute to community development.
How important would you say, is the work volunteers do for YAAPHA?
Volunteers help to induce new skills and knowledge in our various programs. Volunteers with different cultural background help communities to learn from international culture and knowledge. For instance, volunteers work with YAAPHA in running a nursery school and support children from poor families to receive education for free. Volunteers also managed to repair and renovate many school buildings. Volunteers even established a program for sponsoring children from poor families.
They helped sponsor school children from standard one up to secondary school. In our community programs, volunteers worked wonders by helping to drill water wells. Other areas of effect are environmental conservation through planting trees and the establishment of tree nurseries, or the support of youth sports teams in different project areas.
What exactly does YAAPHA do to fight HIV and AIDS and has the situation in Moshi changed during the last years?
We have been conducting in-school and out of school training. Furthermore, we offer counseling and home based care as well as introducing cinematic content to communities and distributing materials such as fliers and CDs to raise awareness on the effects of HIV/AIDS and how to protect from new infections.
In day to day life, we advice using condoms and stay with only one partner.
It is important to teach people how to take care of others living with HIV/AIDS.
The current situation is, that the level of awareness is high in urban areas but it is still a challenge in rural regions. Therefore, there is a need to increase our service especially among the rural population, as well as to conduct different outreach programs and training in schools.
Among our achievements is that we’ve reached 29,560 direct beneficiaries, also we managed to reach 45,432 (Male= 22,431, Female= 23,001) out of school youth in programs of entrepreneurship, life skills and behavior change. In outreach programs especially through our Cinema Shows we reached 153,665 people.
What would you like to tell people who think about volunteering in one of the many YAAPHA volunteer programs?
YAAPHA is gratefully to welcome volunteers all over the world and we value their contribution and consider them as ambassadors toward archiving the YAAPHA vision of helping communities in fighting against poverty and HIV/AIDS. YAAPHA also advice volunteers to observe and cope with local cultures from different societies.
At YAAPHA we value the contribution of volunteers in our programs very much.
What are yours and YAAPHA’s goals for the future?
Our main goal is to help youth become active and improve their livelihood by fighting against poverty and hopefully achieve a generation free of HIV/AIDS. We want to help them build entrepreneurship skills and help young people find employment. In the long run, our goal is to help them escape from social evils and avoid HIV/AIDS transmission. Another goal is to establish different income generating activities for women within our project areas. Of course we work together with many projects and provide various volunteer placements.
YAAPHA needs volunteers to work in various conservational, health related, educational and communal projects that aim to tackle some of Tanzania’s most pressing issues. YAAPHA’s projects are a unique opportunity for volunteers to live in remote areas with spectacular ecosystems and amazing wildlife. The volunteers would be working alongside professionals and other volunteers on adventurous projects that search for practical and sustainable means to reach their goals. The conservation projects are a national effort; from volunteering in the heart of the Kilimanjaro mountain forest, the rain forest or the wildlife reserves and Marangu Waterfalls, conservation awareness volunteers get involved in a mixture of physical and scientific work.
Youth in Action Against Poverty and HIV/AIDS, (YAAPHA), exists in order to minimize the transmission and impact of HIV/AIDS through capacity building, advocacy, information, education, communication, care and support in the municipality of Moshi.
You are interested and you want to apply for a YAAPHA volunteer program? Find volunteer programs in Tanzania here and apply now. YAAPHA is waiting for your application!