Story of Nzotheka Youth Club
Timothy studies mass communication at Malawi Institute of Journalism. He is the first member of Nzotheka who started his studies at a university. He is currently doing an internship as a reporter at Yoneco Radio in Lilongwe.
Sex og Politikk works closely with our sister organisation in Malawi, Family Planning Association of Malawi (FPAM), and as a part of the collaboration supports one of FPAM’s youth clubs, Nzotheka.
FPAM‘s Nzotheka youth club started in 2009 in Lilongwe, Malawi, with the aim of bringing together young people who are HIV positive in order to build co-existence and collaboration among them. Nzotheka, which literally means «it’s possible», has had a great impact on the lives of many HIV positive youths, and it has helped in giving them hope.
The youths range from the age of 10-24 years. They have undergone different trainings, which has helped in equipping them with different skills, such as peer education, ART (antiretroviral therapy) adherence and others. This and many other self-care skills have made these young people well prepared to reach out to others with positive messages and withstand stigma and discrimination.
According to Harrison Chirwa, one of the long serving members of the club, Nzotheka has more than thirty members, and most of them are
orphans. Because of their background, most of these youths need support to finish their studies.
The club runs different income generating activities, such as bead making, where club members create jewelry and decorate sandals with the handmade decorative beads made of paper. These activities are a big help in building of the financial muscle of the youth club.
As the slogan of the club goes – «Nzotheka!! Living positive and maintaining our goals» – this is the spirit which has been driving the club ever since.