The United States Ambassador’s Small Grants program (ASG) provides one-time small grants to community development programs that improve the socio-economic wellbeing and/or health of the community.  The ASG Program is designed to support communities’ own efforts and initiatives.  Funding under the ASG Program is provided by the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). 

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Mrs. Olayinka Balogun, PEPFAR representative, with Barbara Pepoli, Loving Gaze General Manager, some of PEPFAR beneficiaries and Loving Gaze staff

On Friday 23rd June Loving Gaze had the pleasure to welcome Mrs. Olayinka Balogun, PEPFAR representative, at St Kizito Clinic in Idi-Araba, Lagos, along with a few special guests: the Baale of Idi-Araba and two representatives of Mushin LGA. 

The meeting gave us the opportunity to present what we achieved thanks to the PEPFAR Small Grant to support some vulnerable communities in Lagos (Idi-Araba, Lekki and Ikorodu) with special care towards children and women. 

In November 2016, thanks to PEPFAR Small Grants Program, Loving Gaze kicked off an ambitious program towards:

  • Training in Nutrition, HIV prevention and Care 
  • Child Training and Protection for 100 children
  • Health and Skill acquisition among PABA and PLHWAs

Loving Gaze social workers team in coordination with St Kizito Clinics medical staff organised several Training of Trainers and Community Trainings in Lekki, Idi-Araba and Ikorodu (Lagos), involving almost 500 participants.

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  • Several Training of Trainers and Community trainings, which involved : 
    • Hygiene and HIV Testing and Care
    • Feeding in context of HIV and safe infants weaning
    • Puberty development, self awareness and child abuse
    • Hand, dental and environment hygiene

Loving Gaze social workers with the help of volunteers, professionals and successful participants to our previous women empowerment programs, organized several skills acquisition trainings  in Lekki, Idi-Araba and Ikorodu (Lagos). We taught 112 caregivers simple income generating skills.

  • Soap Making
  • Tailoring
  • Catering
  • Hairdressing

We empowered the most talented and active participants through the procurement of the equipment and raw materials to kick off their small businesses. 

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Mrs. Olayinka Balogun, PEPFAR representative with Ms Barbara Pepoli, Loving Gaze General Manager looking at the work by some of the participating to the Women Acquisition Skills

Sixteen beneficiaries who started their own small activity had the chance to present their stories and how the Small Grant, and the skills trainings changed their life. They proudly showcased some of their work: tailoring, catering and soap making.  

On top of all this Loving Gaze contributed to the project providing:

  • Subsidised health care to 600 HIV patients 
  • Free medical care and nutrition support to 110 mothers visiting St Kizito Clinics’ nutrition centres

Mrs. Olayinka Balogun, PEPFAR representative, was impressed by the whole project development and touched by our beneficiaries resilience and efforts. She was pleased to notice a real impact on our beneficiaries’ life, a positive and lasting change. “I am now comfortable” She encouraged our women to keep up with their good work.

Idi-Araba’s Baale also gave a speech. He said he has been living at Idi-araba since birth and also uses St Kizito Clinic for his medical care, but he didn’t know that St. Kizito Clinic was doing such training and empowerment program for the people in his community.

He showed his gratitude and promised to inform the council of elders about the feats of the clinic in their next meeting. He further stated that whenever they have the opportunity to meet the Governor of Lagos state, Akinwunmi Ambode; they will also tell him about the wonderful things the clinic, with PEPFAR’s support, is offering his community.

To know more download the presentation