Effectiveness and sustainability assessment of HIV/AIDS awareness and preventive project of Free Pentecostal Fellowship in Kenya.
Background The Free Pentecostal Fellowship in Kenya (FPFK) started an HIV/Aids Awareness and Preventive Project in the year 2000.Several activities have been held in three regions of the country namely the Nyanza, the Coast and Southern rift. The activities have been held both in schools, churches and community which include mass campaigns, sports, church seminars, community campaigns etc.In 2003, PYM asked FPFK to conduct an evaluation to assess the impact of the project in the various target areas. The evaluation was conducted in the beginning of 2004. The evaluation came up with some recommendations especially with a view to make the activities more effective in the event of approval of a phase II project by PYM. Following the findings of the evaluation of phase I project, PYM and BN recommended approval for funding of phase II proposal from FPFK for the period 2005 - 2009. Activities have now been running for two years.The phase II project with support from PYM commenced in 2005 during which PMU InterLife, (The Pentecostal Church in Sweden) also granted support to the expansion of the project to more areas. The support under PYM is expected to phase out in 2009 while that of PMU InterLife has approved additional support to a new 3 year phase that should specifically target the youth and which should begin in June 2007.Through this project, FPFK was able to conduct HIV/Aids activities to most of the 19 administrative regions countrywide. Purpose/objective It is critical to involve faith-based groups in HIV/AIDS prevention and care-for the sake of society and of the groups themselves. FPFK has taken up the challenge to initiate HIV/AIDS behaviour change in churches and communities and to help people maintain the good and safe behaviours.Discussions held with PYM in 2006 led to a need to evaluate this project in 2007. PYM also suggested the inclusion of PMU InterLife in the evaluation since the latter is a co-donor to the project. Such an effort is also in line with the Paris Agenda that requires donors and developing countries to harmonize their work for effective results.In the last two years, several challenges have been experienced by the project especially with regard to the budget. Increasing operation costs are affecting implementation of activities. Whereas transport and personnel are important components in the implementation of this project, it is necessary to assess best strategies in rolling out the project with the intention of saving on operation costs.This evaluation is intended in order to determine how the project should gradually phase out and achieve sustainability. Of concern are the strategies of implementation, size of personnel vis a' vie the issues of costs. It is necessary to review the implementation strategies being deployed in order to determine the right methods that promote effective delivery of results. Methodology The methods that were thought to be most useful were: Desk study of Project Documents, visits to communities and families, interview with beneficiaries, Focus Group Discussions Key findings The FPFK Church was the first target of the Project. The Church has shifted position positively.Awareness on HIV/AIDS has been widely created in the target communities.People in the community used to view AIDS as bewitchment with inevitable progressive deterioration till death, and hence they simply watched their infected people die; but, through this Project, they have now learnt that it is a condition that could improve with treatment. People who test positive are receiving care and support.School children who were reached at school have not only become aware but have become awareness creation agents.The Project has trained several Church leaders and Church members on psycho-social support.Many teachers were trained for awareness creation in schools. Recommendations To enhance effectiveness and sustainability, it is recommended that each local assembly of the Church establishes a Local Assembly HIV/AIDS Program managed by its HIV/AIDS CommitteeThe current practice of roving should be discontinued by re-structuring into zones and confining particular staff into specific zones.The Project should introduce child-to-child peer education, drawing on expertise on some local NGOs, e.g. Pandipieri Centre, that are well experienced in that area.Since film shows have been acclaimed as the most effective activity but only available at headquarters, the Project should seek ways of getting videos to be shown more widely.As a response to meeting the acute demand for places to go for testing, the Project should encourage Church-established VCT centers.A well planned approach should be made to disseminate the FPFK Church HIV Policy at the regions and the assemblies. Comments from the organisation The results and experiences of the evaluation will be shared by all the partners in Norway, Sweden and Kenya. This is expected to strengthen the tripartite cooperation among the partners in future development work.