Washington DC, December 14, 2010— The World Bank has approved US$55 million to expand HIV and AIDS interventions throughout the country, and also increase access to bed nets among Kenyans living in malaria-prone areas through funding for the national malaria program.
The additional financing for the Total War Against HIV and AIDs (TOWA) Project, which was approved by the World Bank Board of Executive Directors today, will scale up the HIV and AIDS prevention and mitigation activities supported by TOWA since March 2008.
“The increased resources being made available through the additional financing will allow this successful project to reach even more Kenyans, and extend the country’s efforts to prevent the spread of the HIV and AIDS epidemic,” said Johannes Zutt, the Country Director for Kenya. “The project will also continue to strengthen social accountability and financial management in the sector, and so increase benefits to the target households and communities.”
The TOWA Project has already enabled over 4.5 million Kenyans to benefit from community grants. In addition, 500,000 long lasting insecticidal bed nets have been procured for people living with HIV and AIDS. The additional financing will build on these successes, including by increasing the number of HIV and AIDS community grants from 4,000 to 8,400, and expanding the procurement of malaria bed nets to 2.8 million, as part of Kenya’s aim to reach universal coverage.
“The Bank is supporting the implementation of the Kenya National AIDS Strategic Plan,” said Wacuka Ikua, TOWA’s Task Team Leader. “The additional funding will further encourage behavior change among the general population and particularly the most-at-risk populations, and help increase the use of condoms, especially among young people, as well as expand access to TB drugs.”
The Project will continue to support the institutional development of the National AIDS Control Council (NACC) and strengthen the capacity of community based organizations and non-governmental organizations, which are successfully engaged in HIV and AIDS prevention and mitigation especially at the constituency and district levels.
The Bank is collaborating closely in Kenya with other development partners, including the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) and the United Nations, in HIV and AIDS intervention programs.
The Government and the World Bank are engaged with other stakeholders in critical human development programs to improve the livelihoods of Kenyans, in line with Vision 2030.
“The TOWA is already making an important contribution towards addressing the HIV and AIDS scourge. The additional financing is a testimony to the progress already being made, and will enable us to achieve even more as we go forward together,” said Prof. Alloys Orago, Executive Director of the NACC.
The additional financing will enable the Bank to restructure the TOWA and extend the closing date by 18 months to June 2013.
The TOWA credit was approved on standard International Development Association (IDA) terms that include a repayment period of 40 years with a 10-year grace period.