AWA programs are designed to empower ALL women, adolescent girls, and young women; with a special target on the following beneficiaries:
Struggling with extreme poverty, unemployment, destitution, and hunger; the number of women practising transactional sex in Zimbabwe has significantly risen. These women engage in once-off, short term or long-term sexual relations in order to earn a livelihood. The vast majority of these women resort to sex work out of desperation because it is the best and or only option available.
Labeling the trade “sex work” neither makes the work dignified, morally acceptable nor harmless. A significant number feel embarrassed, ashamed, and stigmatized. At AWA we offer solidarity, care, and support in a prejudice-free zone; believing sex workers deserve access to health and safety from exploitation and violation.
As a Women’s movement; All Women Advocacy strongly connects the dots between sex workers’ rights and gender equality. Our Feminism recognises that sex workers' rights are human rights that should be protected under international human rights frameworks. Ultimately, there can be no gender equality if sex workers’ human rights are not fully recognised and protected. Given that the majority of sex workers are women, protecting sex workers’ rights is imperative to achieving gender equality as defined under The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).
Additional factors such as gender-based violence, poverty, and gender inequality increase AGYW's risk of HIV infection. There are important facts that need to be understood regarding sex work and impoverished communities. Understanding the logistics of sex work illuminates how poverty perpetuates it.
Our work with sex workers focuses on the following priority areas:
Sex workers in all settings report various forms of harassment and violence. Women who engage in transactional sex often suffer sexual violence, emotional and psychological violence, extortion, revenge pornography, etc. perpetrated by sexual partners, and these violations often go unreported. AWA offers 24/7 GBV response services that link women to support systems.
Due to a double stigmatized identity derived from sex work and having a common mental health problem; sex workers who suffer from mental health problems often do not seek help. This creates a gap for unmet mental healthcare needs that require specific interventions for sex workers. AWA provides counseling services and bridges the gap linking sex workers to mental health services.