Helping Thousands to Cope with the Economic Impact of HIV/AIDS

For Immediate Release:

IESC’s Innovative BizAIDS Africa Program Reaches 10th Anniversary

 

Helping Thousands of SMEs in Sub Saharan Africa to Cope with the Economic Impact of HIV/AIDS

WASHINGTON DC, February 14, 2014: International Executive Service Corps (IESC) is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its successful BizAIDS program, set up in southern Africa in 2004 to help small businesses, their owners, families and local communities mitigate the impact of HIV/AIDS.

Small businesses often cannot survive when HIV/AIDS strikes owners or employees.  Absenteeism and insupportable healthcare costs can lead to business failure and serious hardships for employees and families, who depend on the income brought in by the business.  IESC’s BizAIDS program is very different from other HIV/AIDS programs: it delivers practical information and business skills to very small businesses in rural areas, which are vulnerable when faced with a crisis; it introduces them to concepts about HIV/AIDS testing, prevention and treatment in non-threatening ways; and it provides assistance with regard to succession planning, in order to protect assets for micro entrepreneurs and their families.

 

According to Ambassador Tom Miller, President & CEO of IESC, the program has had incredible results.  ‘Over the last 10 years, BizAIDS has helped tens of thousands of micro entrepreneurs, small businesses and rural communities in Sub Saharan Africa cope with the economic impacts of HIV/AIDS, providing long-term stability and growth to support jobs where they are needed most.’

BizAIDS provides training for small business owners and employees in the following areas:  (1) business planning; (2) basic HIV/AIDS information to help prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS; and (3) legal rights, succession planning and opportunities.  BizAIDS is designed to be locally sustainable and is currently being implemented by local NGOs In Zambia (LEAD/Zambia) and in South Africa (South Africa Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS).   

International Executive Service Corps (IESC) is a US not-for-profit that sends consultants and volunteers to developing countries whose private enterprises need American managerial and technical expertise.  Since 1964, IESC has worked in partnership with local people in 130 countries ‘ mainly with the generous support of USAID – designing, implementing, managing and evaluating a wide range market driven solutions for a company or industry.  Our experts have helped create more than one million jobs throughout the world, raising living standards, and leaving behind a legacy of burgeoning private businesses.

Media Contact: Erin L. Spinnell

e: espinnell@iesc.org; t: +1.202.589.2600; www.iesc.org