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UNFPA Deputy Executive Director and UN Assistant Secretary-General Kate Gilmore concludes visit to Zimbabwe


UNFPA Deputy Executive Director and UN Assistant Secretary-General Kate Gilmore concluded a three-day visit to support UNFPA’s work with the Government of Zimbabwe in the areas of maternal health, gender and young people’s sexual and reproductive health.

The visit, which began with courtesy calls on the Minister of Health and Child Care, Honourable David Parirenyatwa, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Honourable Simbarashe Mumbengegwi, was followed by key meetings with donors, heads of UN agencies, UNFPA Implementing Partners (IPs) and communities.

“UNFPA has been able to work and produce results in Zimbabwe because of the Government’s willingness to partner,” Ms. Gilmore said. “Also, the combined efforts of UN agencies in their respective areas of expertize have shown how much can be achieved working together.”

Ms. Gilmore officiated at the launch of the Health Development Fund (HDF) at Mahusekwa Hospital in Marondera. The HDF, which is taking over from the Health Transition Fund (HTF), is a multi-donor fund to the health sector, with a budget of US$680 million over five years (2016-2020). It will be funded by the governments of Canada, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the European Union as well as the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations (GAVI). It is expected to focus on Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCH-A).

Speaking at the launch, Ms. Gilmore said: “The Health Development Fund pillars speak quite strongly to some of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). There is need for a concerted effort to end preventable maternal and new-born deaths and disabilities.”

A highlight of her trip was a visit to Musasa Shelter for Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Survivors, where she gained an overview of the extent of the problem and the combined efforts of different stakeholders in addressing GBV and supporting survivors. A stopover at the Wilkins SGBV Clinic revealed the emergence of a vital service for survivors of sexual- and gender-based violence, integrating sexual reproductive health with HIV & AIDS.

Ms. Gilmore’s visit has come at a time when UNFPA Zimbabwe is preparing to start a new programme cycle – the Seventh Country Programme (2015 -2020). Over the next programme cycle, UNFPA Zimbabwe will strengthen its focus on development using a rights-centred approach around pregnant women, young girls and other vulnerable populations in Zimbabwe.

“What I have seen and heard has touched and inspired me greatly. Zimbabwe is a young country, doing great things. I have deep respect for the young professionals working with UNFPA and elsewhere in government and the City of Harare, who give me a sense of assurance that the support from UNFPA is making a difference in the lives of women, adolescents and children.”

UNFPA Country Representative, Cheikh Tidiane Cisse, said Ms. Gilmore’s visit has drawn attention to the important work that UNFPA Zimbabwe is doing with its partners.

“Ms. Gilmore’s visit has greatly raised the profile of the country programme nationally and globally. Going forward, the expectation is sustained improvement in the health and wellbeing of women and young people in Zimbabwe.”


UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, is the lead UN agency in expanding the possibilities for women and young people to lead healthy sexual and reproductive lives. We are on the ground in more than 140 countries working with governments, civil society, development partners and the private sector to promote the right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health and equal opportunity.

For more information, please contact:

Bertha Shoko, UNFPA Communications Analyst

Tel: +263 4 338836; Mob: +263 772 782 299; Email: