Where we work
ZEP focuses its efforts in the Western Province of Zambia
Western Province includes the Barotse flood plains of the upper Zambezi river catchment area. The Zambezi river system is amongst the largest in the world, and the fourth largest in Africa. The system naturally floods during the rainy season thus sustaining biodiversity, pastoral, and agricultural systems, with local systems, cultures, and practices adapted to this cycle.
Increasing variability in rainfall patterns has led to unpredictable flood events
These floods place thousands of people at risk, affect transportation infrastructure, change local disease dynamics and impair access to health care resources. Climate change impacts mean that these flood events have been interrupted by periods of severe drought.
Impaired access to health resources results in myriad health challenges
16% of the population of in Western Province lives with HIV, the second highest prevalence in Zambia. Neonatal, infant, and under-five mortality rates are amongst the highest in the country.
Just over one-third of deliveries are attended by skilled health personnel, and less than one-half of health centres have two or more professional health staff (nurses, midwives, clinical officers, environmental health officers).
Variability in seasonal rainfall and flooding is driving high malaria infection rates and resultant drought affects food and nutrition security.
Some of these challenges are being addressed through research and interventions led by partners in ZEP. Learn more about ZEP Clusters