Project introduction/background

East Africa accounts for one-fifth of overall estimated injecting drug user population in Africa with estimates of 261,507. A large number of these communities live in Ethiopia, Kenya, Mauritius and Tanzania.  There is a high HIV prevalence among PWID with Mauritius at 51%, Tanzania 42% and Kenya 18% PWID population is at substantially higher risk of HIV and other blood-borne infections including HCV.  Limited data, low coverage of services and little or no regional coordination has hindered a strategic approach to harm reduction policies in the region.

KANCO, under a regional consortium of organizations, got funding from the Global Fund to implement HIV and harm reduction interventions in eight countries in the East Africa region. The HIV and Harm Reduction in Eastern Africa Regional Project is being implemented in the following countries; Kenya,Burundi, Ethiopia, Mauritius, Seychelles, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania (Mainland), and United Republic of Tanzania (Zanzibar).

It is expected that by the end of this project an additional 30, 000 PWIDs in target countries will be able to access essential HIV prevention services as part of national HIV prevention initiatives. That a favorable national and regional policy environment will have emerged to support harm reduction programming in the project countries, and an established Eastern Africa regional harm reduction network will spear head advocacy activities in the region.

Project objectives
The overall aim of the project is to increase access to essential HIV and harm reduction services for people who inject drugs in Eastern Africa. There are three linked objectives.

  1. Creating an enabling environment to conduct harm reduction activities in Eastern Africa;
  2. Strengthening of community systems for a sustained HIV response among people who inject drugs in eastern Africa; and
  3. Generating and utilizing strategic information on drug use related interventions in the region.

The beneficiary

  • Communities of people who inject and use drugs in the Eastern Africa Region


  • Organization for Support Services for AIDS – Ethiopia
  • Tanzania Council for Social Development – Tanzania, Main Land
  • Alliance BurundaiseContre le SIDA – Burundi
  • CollectifUrgenceToxida HIV – Mauritius
  • AIDS Support Organization – Seychelles
  • Community Health Alliance Uganda – Uganda
  • Commission for National Coordination and Drug Control – Zanzibar
  • Kenya Harm Reduction Network–Kenya
  • International Network of people who Inject drugs
  • Alliance for Public Health-Ukraine
  • International Drug Policy Consortium
  • East Africa Community
  • London School of Hygiene and tropical Medicine

Project Implementation period

3 years (October 2015 to September 2018)