Who They Are
Community-Based Trainers (CBTs) come from all backgrounds; their identities span from passionate mother to charismatic youth. Despite the diversity in education and life experiences, CBTs share one common goal: to improve the lives of children, especially those who are orphaned and/or vulnerable. Community-Based Trainers are carefully selected because of their knowledge of local communities and their understanding of the community structures that provide service to orphan and vulnerable children (OVC). CBTs receive technical training in Children First (CF) programs, child rights, report writing, home-based visits, finance, and granting tools used by CF. CBTs are the backbone of the majority of CF activities. Currently there are 16 CBTs in the Harare office and 22 in the Bulawayo and Umzingwane area.
What They Do
In order to strengthen the capacity of Community-Based Organizations, CBTs provide useful up-to-date feedback from the community. CF, through CBTs, offers program support to partners for school health assessments, a child rights radio listener program, and various activities that require extra staff. In some cases, CBTs monitor the project progress, verify activities reported and services accessed by OVCs, and help complement partner case management visits. Community Based Trainers are also responsible for the following tasks:
- Developing community based service directories and joining Child Protection Committees
- Performing facility-based checks (ensuring access and quality of services to beneficiaries)
- Recording data, conducting home visits, and assisting with health assessments and other partner activities
This is one of their stories.
Tiwirirai Pearl Mhlanga, also known as Tiwi, has been a community-based trainer for over 2 years.
Tiwirirai Pearl Mhlanga
My name is Tiwirirai Pearl Mhlanga. I have been working
for Children First as a volunteer since June 2009. I
am a Community-Based Trainer. My duties include working
with the community-based organizations in different parts
of Harare and verifying that the children are receiving
the required services. I collect data from schools within
these communities for Children First.
I love working with children from different societies.
There is no greater feeling than that of being welcomed
by someone without any reservations. Although the children
I have interacted with do have issues that affect them:
school fees, food, clothing and family, I would without
a doubt say that they are the strongest people I know.
Despite all this adversity they still carry the hope
that someday things will get better. This has made my
experience a bittersweet one. It is refreshing working
with young people who still have the ability to dream
big without thinking of limitations. It has helped me
to re-evaluate what I want in my own life. The greatest
lesson that I have learned is that life is more satisfying
when you spend your time helping others; not only do
you becomes less selfish in your thinking but your capacity
to love increases therefore making you a better person
from the inside out. I am indeed humbled and grateful
to be a part of an organization that has the privilege
of working with children.
back to top