Auxilia Katongomara, Chronicle Reporter
First Lady Auxilia Mnangagwa’s Angel of Hope Foundation is among the first-time exhibitors at the 60th Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) and is raising awareness on its charitable programmes and seeking partners.
Angel of Hope is as non-profit organisation founded by the First Lady and strives to support the most vulnerable groups in Zimbabwe by providing health, livelihoods and social protection focusing on women, youth and children.
In an interview yesterday at the foundation’s exhibition stand located just outside Hall 4 at the ZITF, its chief executive officer Mrs Busi Marandure said the foundation was targeting women and children as well as courting partners for its charity work.
“As Angel of Hope Foundation this is our first time exhibiting at ZITF and we are exhibiting because we want to target women and children as they are our focus group. We are also targeting donors, we really would like people to come and donate what they can to our cause, to help us and also targeting partners. We want partnerships with every other sector that is available to partner with us. We are open to opportunities linked to achieve our goals,” said Mrs Marandure.
She said the exhibition would also help demystify that the organisation is based and targets Harare people only.
“It’s also another opportunity to show people that it’s not a Harare-based organisation but we offer our services across the country. This is our first time here in Bulawayo; from here we are looking forward to going to the Mutare Agricultural Show,” she said.
“It’s quite interesting, some people didn’t know about Angel of Hope and they are liking us and asking about Angel of Hope and also the mobile bus is a big attraction so many people coming here get screened for cancer. So far so good. You will find out that people are really interested in partnering with us, they really want to find out what we do which is good because we have achieved one of our goals which is being noticed and being there for the vulnerable in society not just people reading about us in the newspaper.”
Mrs Marandure said they had brought a mobile screening clinic for breast and cervical cancer which has proved to be very popular with women.
“We have women who are being tested and screened for breast and cervical cancer which is a very good thing because we have managed to de-stigmatise cancer in different ways,” she said.
She said Angel of Hope was not new to Bulawayo as the First Lady has also extended her programmes to Matabeleland region. Mrs Marandure said they donated to orphans and old people’s homes in Matabeleland last Christmas and the First Lady has rolled out inheritance and health programmes in the region too.
The Angel of Hope Foundation’s impact areas are health and nutrition, livelihood and social protection.
Under the health and nutrition area, the foundation focuses on nutrition issues particularly for expecting mothers and children under five years of age , cervical cancer screening and rehabilitation of clinics and medical equipment supplies.
On livelihoods it focuses on women’s economic empowerment, mentorship programme and on social protection it has the girl-child initiative.
Following the First Lady’s cancer screening awareness campaign, the number of women screened leapt to 110 000 countrywide in 2018 from only 40 000 in 2017. – @AuxiliaK