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The Kapnek Trust has ambitious but attainable goals. We aim to maintain the falling rates of mother-to-child HIV transmission, while also reducing Zimbabwe's child mortality from 9% to less than 2%. We want to increase the number of early childhood education and health centers annually until every child has the opportunity to engage in this crucial development programming.


We intend to create additional rehabilitation services until every disabled child has an opportunity for medical treatment, as well as continuing to support the Harare Children's Hospitals' efforts to become a world class training and treatment center. We know that these goals may seem unattainable, but with your help, they are well within our reach.



The AIDS epidemic took a terrible toll on family life in Zimbabwe creating more than 1 million orphans. Strong family and community ties ensure most children are taken in by a grandparent, aunt or neighbor. The Kapnek Trust supports these orphans, their caregivers and other children living within caregiving households, through its preschools established at existing primary schools in Zimbabwe.


With the support of the community, the trust renovates classrooms, and trains community members to become teachers. The preschools provide students with a stimulating early childhood educational experience, playtime, immunizations and routine health care.


Children receive a vitamin fortified nutritious porridge each day which is prepared by volunteers; sadly, at times this is the only complete meal the children have for the day. This program received UNICEF's "Best Practice Award' in 2010 and was listed as a model after review of 77 other programs in Southern Africa. While we have refurbished and supported operations at well over 220 preschools, we have had to reduce the number of schools we are supporting to 152 due to a recent decrease in grant funding.


That said, we continued to support over 14,500 young children at 152 primary schools with daily nutritional support, quarterly health check-ups and an early childhood education program. In addition, 389 new parents received an education program on early infant stimulation and development. 



The Children's Rehabilitation Unit was founded in 1978 by Dr. Powell and a group of concerned colleagues came under the Kapnek umbrella when Dr. Powell joined as County Director in 2001. The unit, originally established at Harare Central Hospital, works in partnership with the Ministry of Health to enhance physical therapy services to children with cerebral palsy and other forms of childhood disability. Parents are trained in the provision of physical therapy for their children, as well as participate in support groups to reduce the isolation brought about by the stigma of disability. The program conducts community education campaigns about the causes of disability to address the traditional beliefs that are underpinning the stigma. 


The Trust has expanded the program with satellite programs that serve the greater Harare area and similar activities in Zimbabwe's second largest city, Bulawayo. The trust recently completed construction of a new Children's Rehabilitation Unit building adjacent to Harare Children's Hospital. This new purpose built facility allows physicians, nurses and physical therapists to work with children with disabilities and their parents in an easily accessible and functional facility. In addition Kapnek Trust USA continues our efforts to improve the mobility of disabled children shipping over containers of specialized wheelchairs which can be transformational for the child and family, giving them access to school and public life.



Harare Children's Hospital was newly constructed as a 350 bed pediatric specific facility adjacent to Harare Central Hospital's Maternity Unit in 1998. It fell into disrepair and closed in 2008 amidst world record setting hyperinflation in Zimbabwe. In 2010, the J.F. Kapnek Trust facilitated the reopening of the hospital and the establishment of an independent Harare Children's Hospital Trust to oversee the revitalization of this critical facility.


Marshaling local and international support, we have led efforts to repair the hospital's infrastructure, resulting in the reopening of several pediatric wards, a neonatal intensive care unit, childrens play rooms and several surgical suites. The Trust is now expanding to provide nursing and pediatric specialty training in order to develop the physicians and nurses who will care for Zimbabwe's children today and in the years ahead.


Look into the future: Moving forward, the Trust's goal is to provide an integrated suite of programs addressing the health and educational needs of Zimbabwe's children, birth to age five. We envisage a Harare Children's Hospital which functions both to provide excellent care, but of equal importance, as a training center for physicians and nurses to care for Zimbabwe's children. In an expanded national effort, we will work to improve nurse training around maternal and neonatal care countrywide, providing the equipment needed to better manage prematurity, neonatal respiratory distress, jaundice and neonatal sepsis at both Central and District level hospitals.


We envisage an expansion of our preschool program to provide a place for every preschooler, children will receive not only a quality early childhood education, but also regular health and nutrition services.


With these efforts, we will achieve our goal to reduce under 5yrs child mortality in Zimbabwe from 9% to below 2% Over the next 10 years, and we will ensure Zimbabwean children reach school age healthy, well fed and prepared to learn.



Maternal-Child Health/Pediatric HIV prevention has evolved into a broader effort to reduce the burden of disease caused by HIV, Tb and HPV. Our partner organization, J.F. Kapnek Zimbabwe trains and supports professionals, birthing centers and hospitals in Zimbabwe to counsel expectant mothers, conduct HIV testing, and administer the medications needed to reduce the risk of HIV being passed from mother to child during birth and early childhood. Together we continue to make huge strides in diminishing the impact of these diseases throughout the districts where our teams are working. In partnership with the Ministry of Health we have expanded our footprint to involve both community and hospital based programs. New diagnosis of HIV has now fallen below 5% of patients who are tested. More importantly 93% of all patients are on antiretroviral treatment and 63% are on concurrent Tb preventative regimens.

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