Zimbabwe is home to a dynamic youth project focused on HIV prevention. Fr Ted Rogers SJ launched the Jesuit AIDS Project (JAP) in Harare in 1996 with Mrs Christine Mtize to fight the alarmingly high prevalence rate in the country. Since then, JAP has enabled thousands of youth to live responsibly and happily, to keep free from HIV, and to promote justice and compassion in their communities.
Many Jesuits in the ZIM Province are involved in ministry that touches upon HIV-AIDS. Currently there are about 120 Jesuits living and working in Zimbabwe in different apostolates: running many schools, involvement in running 10 parishes (four in Harare, another just outside the city and five in rural areas). JAP is present in the schools; the parishes offer food aid, pastoral care and counselling; chaplains accompany people with HIV.
Silveira House is a Jesuit social centre that incorporates HIV and AIDS in its development and training activities. And the Jesuit Relief Fund supplies food aid to people in great need.
Fr Oskar Wermter SJ, of Jesuit Communications, writes the Mbare Reports to underline the harsh reality of life in Mbare Township, a high-density neighbourhood of Harare where he is based.