Promoting Associate Wellness in Zambia
More than 250 associates work at General Cable’s plant in Luanshya, Zambia. Zambia has one of the world’s most devastating HIV and AIDS epidemic, where more than one in every seven adults in the country is living with HIV. The life expectancy at birth has fallen to just 39 years. This is why General Cable has been conducting continuous awareness and training campaigns for its associates, their spouses and their children over the age of 12. The company also offers voluntary free testing and counseling as well as a free supply of anti-retroviral drugs to HIV-positive associates.
Malaria is a life-threatening parasitic disease transmitted by mosquitoes that has also threatened the health of General Cable associates in Zambia. One million people die each year from malaria, and 90% of all malaria deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa. General Cable not only regularly sprays its factory but also sprays the homes of all its associates. The company works as a liaison with the Ministry of Health on environmental management to control breeding sites. A larviciding program was implemented, covering the factory and community houses within a two-kilometer radius. General Cable supplemented the government-sponsored distribution of mosquito nets, providing each associate with three nets. All of these programs are designed to prevent the spread of malaria, but it can be transmitted to someone else if a mosquito sucks the blood of somebody that is infected and then bites another person. People living with HIV or AIDS are especially vulnerable to malaria. Therefore, General Cable offers treatment and medicine to its associates and their families who contract malaria to break the chain and keep malaria from spreading to others.