The United States Embassy together with the office of the First Lady of Namibia will celebrate the enrolment of 1,400 girls into the Determined, Resilient, Empowered, AIDS-free, Mentored and Safe (DREAMS) programme. DREAMS Namibia is an initiative that empowers adolescent girls and young women to remain HIV-free and to fully achieve their potential. Jaques du Toit, Communications Officer at the U.S. Embassy, told the Economist that the target population for the DREAMS programme are girls and young women (ages 9-24), divided into targeted support for three age groups: 9-14 years, 15-19 years and 20-24 years.
The U.S. Embassy said that the DREAMS initiative goes beyond the health sector, addressing the structural drivers that directly and indirectly increase girls' HIV risk, including poverty, gender inequality, sexual violence and a lack of education. To date, DREAMS Namibia has received USD 10 million and a further USD 10 million will be available as of October.
At the official event the U.S. Embassy in Namibia together with its partners, PEPFAR Namibia and the Office of the First Lady, will also expand the programme to three regions in the districts of Windhoek, Katima Mulilo, Omuthiya, Onandjokwe, and Tsumeb.