Uganda’s burden of disease is dominated by communicable diseases, which account for over 50% of illness and death. Malaria, HIV/AIDS, TB and respiratory diseases, diarrhea, epidemic-prone and vaccine-preventable diseases is the leading causes of illness and death. There is also a growing burden of non-communicable diseases.
A combined team of medical professionals, skillful coordinators, and volunteers from Wamu have merge together for medical outreaches. Through them people are sensitized about sexually Transmitted diseases [STD’s], HIV/Aids testing, counseling and they have greatly improved lives through those services. Wamu healthy team believes that information is power and the more the locals are educated about these avoidable disease it decreases the rate of infections among the population.
Sensitization and awareness
Wamu” team is so much committed to public sensitization sessions in different communities. We believe that information is power, and most of these healthy conditions can be avoidable, therefore since prevention is better than cure, Wamu Team provides those services through sensitization and awareness.
For examples if we could reflect on local the level of prevalence among the youths and the target population is increasing. This is as a result of increased youths (girls) involvement in sex trade for a living, mother to child infections and limited sex education to the youths and the elderly. There is increase in HIV/AIDS stigma, negative attitudes mainly affect persons with HIV/AIDS and their families (and especially their children), but also have implications for workplaces and communities. Stigma can therefore be a barrier not only to identifying HIV/AIDS as a problem in a community but also to defining prevention, care and mitigation responses. It is widely believed that rural populations are ‘aware’ of HIV/AIDS and that this knowledge is enough to initiate behavior changes and prevent the spread of the epidemic but most rural men and women have indeed heard of HIV/AIDS though it can’t be assumed that all are adequately informed about the epidemic and able to act upon. Information in rural areas is often very limited due to social, economic, religious, gender and cultural barriers which are formidable obstacles to behavior change.
Children in schools are often put aside from the education campaigns because of these barriers. About 92% of sexually active Ugandans are not yet HIV+. It is vital that we do everything we can to prevent new infections. Education and awareness campaigns, condom distribution and testing are important ways to prevent the spread of HIV. Everyone has to understand the danger of unprotected sex, and the responsibility to protect themselves and their partners. The silence and stigma surrounding HIV and AIDS must be broken and replaced by openness, good communication and compassion.
The impact of HIV/AIDS has far deadly implications to the families, children, communities and the nation. Addressing the root causes of children’s vulnerabilities, it’s important that HIV/AIDS programs are integrated in all our day to day activities through drawing up wills to ensure that widows and their children, regardless of sex, can inherit property; keep their children in schools and and a need for capacity-building to help communities and community-based organizations (CBOs)/NGOs to conduct HIV/AIDS impact assessments.
We aim at running an effective prevention campaign so as to reduce the infection rate by:
- Carrying out targeted tastings.
- Educating everyone to understand how these diseases are spread and what they can do to protect themselves.
- Making condoms freely and easily available and educating people on how to use them.
- Promoting openness so that we can break down the stigma and silence surrounding.
- Making everyone aware of the plight of people living with HIV and the problems faced by their families, counseling and providing help/care for people who are affected.
- Encouraging testing for all people who are sexually active and making sure there is proper counseling that goes with the testing.
- Ensuring people to understand their rights and the treatment options once they have been enrolled to care and adherence to treatment.
- Conducting referrals and linkages.
NOTE: There is need to support, identify and provide Income-generating micro projects that can improve the livelihood security of households with ill adults and provide income-earning opportunities for poor rural people living with HIV and other incurable diseases so that they can support their families and cop up with life.