Generating location data to allocate community workers where they are most needed in the fight against HIV.

In the southern highlands of Tanzania, KIHUMBE’s team uses low-cost digital tools to produce maps and manage data to more efficiently allocate their limited resources to reduce HIV/AIDS.

KIHUMBE is a non-profit NGO located in Mbeya, Tanzania—a district that has one of the highest prevalence rates of HIV/AIDS in the country. KIHUMBE provides HIV-related services and counselling to at-risk individuals representing vulnerable populations, including orphans and children. Given the region’s growing population and a pressing need to allocate limited resources and services strategically, KIHUMBE’s team is eager to adopt more efficient methods for information management to be able to effectively serve those communities in greatest need for support and services.

After the team learned about KIHUMBE’s challenges with generating and maintaining their own datasets through site visits, HOT and OMDTZ developed a training program that focused on using OpenDataKit (ODK) Collect to create and deploy surveys, using a Kobo Toolbox server to monitor incoming data/submitted responses and using QGIS to visualize data and generate a hot spot map. These are all free tools. The team learned that the most effective way to encourage ownership over activities was to train specific individuals on the tools that would benefit them most in the work they already do. Because Jeremia, the M&E Officer, focuses on the organization’s impact data, he received focused training on building mobile survey forms in Excel. Since peer educators would use the hotspot maps in their respective wards to conduct outreach, these individuals were trained on using ODK and deployed to collect hotspot data in their communities. Once data collection was complete, KIHUMBE staff was provided additional training to use clean and compile the spatial data in QGIS and perform basic steps to generate hot spot maps of a given ward.

HIV hotspot map. Red buildings are more closer to HIV hotspots