VSO peer educator JK in Zimbabwe
©VSO/Cynthia Matonhodze


We've worked in Zimbabwe since 1982. We work to build healthy communities, by addressing gender-based violence and improving health in prisons.

Healthy communities

A group of male prisoners sit in a circle listening to a peer educator speak about health issues
VSO/Cynthia R Matonhodze

Peer support groups are at the heart of our work to improve prisoners' health and wellbeing.

In collaboration with the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Service, local government departments and partner NGOs, we work to support prisoners’ wellbeing and access to health services, with a particular focus on responding to high rates of HIV infection and AIDS amongst prison populations. We train inmates as volunteer peer educators, who provide essential information, advice and psychosocial support to their fellow prisoners – encouraging them to get tested and manage their condition effectively.

Through vocational skills and livelihoods training, we prepare prisoners for their life after release, supporting them to earn a decent living and reintegrate successfully into the local community. We also empower prisoners to understand their rights to healthcare and hold authorities to account, through a community scorecard system that provides an invaluable feedback mechanism and a space to improve the relationship between inmates and authorities.

Improving prison health and wellbeing

Through our Gender Empowerment and Development Programme, we’re working to improve the sexual and reproductive health (SRH) of vulnerable women and girls by increasing access to comprehensive health services, supporting opportunities for economic empowerment, and advocating for change at the policy level.

Speak it loud

Alongside our partner Women in Law Southern Africa, our Speak it Loud! project is working to empower existing women’s movements and build their capacity to address violence against women and girls in the Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland West and Manicaland provinces.

Contact us

We work with a number of partners including the UK's Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO), the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Service, Women in Law Southern Africa, and local government entities.

If you are interested in supporting our work, or if you have another query, get in touch:

Address: 54 Golden Stairs, Ashbrittle, Mt Pleasant, Harare, Zimbabwe

Tel:  +263 2423 35967 / 335712

Find out more about our work in:

A social worker at Chikurubi Female Prison.
Cynthia R Matonhodze

Prison health

Improving the health and wellbeing of marginalised and neglected prison populations.