Family integration vital

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— Livingstone District Commissioner, Omar Munsanje says the promotion of social integrations and intergenerational solidarity for family members of all age groups is the only way that bonds families together.

Mr Munsanje noted that many families were breaking due to social, economic and natural factors and can only be bonded together through the promotions of social integrations.

Speaking during the commemoration of the International Day of the Family under the Theme, “ Advancing Social Integration and Intergenerational Solidarity”, at Civic Centre Today, Mr Musanje said there was need for strong measures aimed at integrating
families to promote a sense of interconnectedness and an all inclusive society.

Mr Musanje said it was important to promote integration and intergenerational solidarity among families in the country in order to have great resilience to any economic shocks, death of family members and chronic illnesses.

He noted that of late communities in the country have witnessed breakdown of family ties and disintegration caused by among other factors, ill health due to HIV/AIDS, poverty, lack of access to information, in adequate skills for livelihoods and norms that govern resource uses within and outside the households.

The District Commissioner said in efforts to strengthen family integrations, the PF government has embarked on a number of measures such as introduction of social protection for the aged and vulnerable households through the cash transfer schemes
across the country to provide stable source of income to families.

Mr Musanje also said the establishment of the Maramba Cultural village in Livingstone in readiness for the United Nations World Tourism General Assembly (UNNWTO) would accord families in the tourist capital an opportunity to expose their traditional music, culture and sell some merchandise that will help them earn an income.

He further said the decentralization of acquisition of loans and empowerment funds for the youths, women and vulnerable groups has made it possible for families to create employment through income generating activities to improve their welfare.

At the same function the District Commissioner handed over various foodstuffs and blankets donated by various organizations to vulnerable families including a 92-year-old woman.

Meanwhile, MARCH-Zambia Director Mwendalubi Maumbi said government should take keen interest and invest in scaling up and sustaining programmes aimed at prevention of social ills such HIV/AIDS which has adversely contributed to the disintegration of families in
the country.

Ms Maumbi said government should embrace and support HIV/AIDS prevention measures such as the Families Matter programmes implemented by her organisation which has so far reached 6,000 parents with information to teach their children on sexual behaviour change to effectively address the social impact of the scourge.

She believes that investing in HIV/AIDS prevention programmes will lay a foundation for a responsible and value driven citizens.

And provincial social welfare officer, Morris Moono said high cases of defilement, and rape are some of the social ills threatening family bonds in the province which his department was grappling with especially in Mazabuka and Namwala districts.