The formation of Zimbabwe’s inclusive government in 2009 — the result of a power-sharing deal between two of the country’s top political parties — ushered in hopes for a new kind of leadership in a country that has been ruled by President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu-PF party for more than 30 years. But the country is still in the throes of a fragile transition, and political wrangling has not stopped, as evidenced by high profile disagreements between Zanu-PF and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s party, Movement for Democratic Change.
Because of the tenuous political situation — and despite efforts by the foreign aid community and government to restore economic stability — living conditions in Zimbabwe remain dire. Based on estimates by the World Health Organization and the Joint U.N. Program on HIV/AIDS, or UNAIDS, 67 out of 1,000 children die before age 5 and 1.2 million, or 10 percent of Zimbabwe’s population, are living with HIV and AIDS.