AIDS accounts for 13% of agric staff deaths in Zambia - Research

Lusaka- Zambia (PANA) -- A research study on Zambia, released by the Regional Net work on AIDS, Livelihoods and Food Security (RENEWAL), has revealed that AIDS and other chronic illnesses accounted for close to 13 per cent of agricultural staff deaths from 2002-2007, robbing extension agencies of their valuable workforce and reducing their effectiveness.
For each agricultural worker who died during the prime of his career, the Zambia n government lost an average of 12 years worth of investment in training, the research said.
According to a statement released Tuesday by the International Food Policy Resea rch Institute (IFPRI), policy makers, researchers, development experts and practitioners are meeting in Cape Town, South Africa, to discuss the critica l links between HIV/AIDS, agriculture, hunger and malnutrition in Africa.
Conference participants to the three-day meeting that started Tuesday hope to en hance the understanding of these connections and bridge the divide between the HIV and food/nutrition communities.
The ultimate goal is to identify opportunities to generate a truly multi-sectora l response to AIDS epidemics and ensure the food security of individuals and households facing their many effects.
The workshop is organized by IFPRI and partners in the Regional Network on AIDS, Livelihoods and Food Security (RENEWAL).
Active in Kenya, Malawi, South Africa, Uganda and Zambia for nearly a decade, RE NEWAL aims to improve the lives of people in rural communities, where households are often dependent on agriculture for both income and food and the l inks between HIV/AIDS and hunger are particularly acute.
Based on ten years of research in the region, discussions at the conference will include the effects of AIDS epidemics on agricultural extension and etween HIV/AIDS, food and nutrition security and agriculture call for a multi-pronged approach to tackling the crises,'' Gillesp i e said.
''By sharing concrete evidence on trends and effects and the successes and failures i n dealing with them, we hope to simultaneously make food and nutrition programme s more HIV-sensitive and strategies to address HIV more effective when it comes to nutrition.

10 november 2010 07:56:00

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