Dossier: Mozambique and the Community of Sant'EgidioPope in Africa
General Peace Agreement for Mozambique (1992)
On October 4th 1992 Joaquim Chissano, the Mozambique President and secretary of the FreLiMo, and Afonso Dhlakama, leader of the ReNaMo signed a comprehensive peace agreement. The agreement ended 16-year civil war that had claimed one million lives and resulted in four million of displaced people. The signing concluded a long mediation process at Sant’Egidio in Trastevere.
Since then, Mozambique has experienced long-lasting stability and constant development.
Peace in Mozambique today: the commitment of Sant'Egidio
The Community of Sant’Egidio – that is formed by thousand people of all ages in the country - has continued to keep close to Mozambique from then on to achieve peace after defeating war. A generation, that has never experienced war, grew up in the ‘Schools of Peace’ that the Community of Sant’Egidio has opened in several cities and villages all over the country. A large movement of ‘Youth for Peace’ has spread to schools and universities, propagating a culture of solidarity and gratuitousness, a premise for a pluralistic and peaceful society. Moreover, with BRAVO (Birth Registration against Oblivion) Programme, the Community of Sant'Egidio could register in Mozambique thousands of children that had no legal identity, in order to protect their civil rights. The Community has eventually backed political and diplomatic efforts to keep peace that have developed since 1992 and led to the signing of a final agreement on August 6th.
DREAM: a programme for HIV prevention and treatment in Africa
The DREAM Programme (Disease Relief through Excellent and Advanced Means) was designed and set up by the Community of Sant’Egidio in 2002; it is at present active in 11 African countries (Mozambique included) with 48 clinical centres, in cities and in rural areas. Over 500,000 sick people have been treated up to the present day and 130,000 healthy babies were born to HIV- positive mothers.
The DREAM centre in Zimpeto and the visit of Pope Francis
The DREAM centre in Zimpeto - that Pope Francis is due to visit on September 6th at 8,45 a.m. - aspires to become a reference for women’s and children’s care for the whole country.
The multipurpose centre, built on an area of 2,000 square metres, consists of four specialized wards. A department for treating HIV infection and for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission, another for the early diagnosis of women's neoplasms (cervical and breast cancer). A department for the treatment of tuberculosis that is first cause of death among HIV-infected people as well as one of the leading causes of death in Mozambique, and a fourth ward for malnourished patients, above all children.
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