Tanzania is in East Africa and it is 151st in the UNDP Human Development Index, 4 positions from Kenya, one of its neighbours. Tanzania is the country with the highest population in this region but it has the lowest population density. Most of the people in fact live in the northern part of the country and along the coast and only a third live in urban areas.more...
As in many of its neighbouring countries, over half (about two thirds) of the population are young people under 25 years old, and this figure is increasing because of the high fertility rate (4.8 children per woman). Tanzania is one of the countries with the lowest life expectancy in the world, 62 year for men and 65 years for women. Malaria and respiratory tract infections are the main causes of death in children, whereas in adults it is HIV. In fact Tanzania is 7th in the world for AIDS related deaths. It is estimated that around 1.6 million people in the country are currently living with AIDS and that the prevalence rate among adults is 4.6%.
Over the last 20 years the National Health System has received an increase in public funding and less funds from abroad.
DREAM in Tanzania
The DREAM programme has been present in Tanzania since 2005, following the agreement between the Ministry of Health of Tanzania and the Community of Sant’Egidio. DREAM currently works in 4 areas of the country: the Arusha region, Iringa, the Mara region (Masanga) and the Njombe region (Uwemba).
Frome the start, DREAM collaborated with the district authorities and with other religious organisations, like the Daughters of Charity, with which the Community of Sant’Egidio shares its commitment to the poorest and most marginalised people. DREAM works with the Daughters of Charity in Masanga, where the congregation has a diagnostics laboratory. The DREAM programme in Arusha is based at the healthcare centre of the Fathers of the Holy Spirit, which offers the HIV test. If the result is positive the patients then go to the DREAM centre for their treatment.
The Ministry of Health asked DREAM to open its own centre in Iringa in 2010. This healthcare centre has a molecular biology laboratory and is also recognised as a assistance and treatment centre.
The Swiss Order of Saint Benedict built a hospital in the centre of Uwemba in the Njombe region and invited DREAM to set up a centre there. This area has one of the highest rates of HIV infection but the National Health Service lacks the necessary equipment and specialised personnel to cope with the situation. This is why in 2016 DREAM started treatment and support activities for the patients, together with the first training courses for the of this religious mission’s healthcare personnel....less