2010 – 2011 // The Goat Project
Last year, GlobeMed at UCLA worked to create a sustainable, income-making project for young mothers in the Nwoya District. Through campaigns on campus, we fundraised to buy goats for these young mothers to give them a resource to create their own income. Our chapter raised almost $4000, bought 20 male and 20 female goats, and gave 20 mothers a pair of goats.
The mothers will give the baby goats to the next group of randomly selected mothers and the original group of mothers pays back the price of the vaccinations for the baby goats. This project allows mothers to support their families, bolster the local economy, increase health through nutritious goat milk, and allows for sustainability through breeding.
We are currently in the process of evaluating the health statuses of the goats and the impact that they have had on these mothers’ lives.
2011 – 2012 // Sexual Health Education, Outreach, Intervention
For 2011-2012, GlobeMed at UCLA and the Nwoya Youth Center are working on sexual health education, outreach, and intervention programs. The subprograms are as follows:
1. Boy/Girl Talk Outreach: Trained health workers counsel boys and girls ages 10-24 in separate groups.
Boy and Girl is a division of Straight Talk Foundation that aims to reach youth ranging from 10-24 years of age. In these sessions, girls and boys are groups separately – female counselors teach the girls, while male counselors work with the boys. Trained health workers accompany the counselors in these programs. The reason for separation is to allow comfort to both the boys and girls to open up and be honest about their questions. Boy and Girl Talk generally focuses on sexual health education.
2. Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) Outreaches to Schools: SRH counselors travel directly to schools and teach kids about HIV prevention, growth & development, sexual health counseling, and give career guidance.
SRH Outreach focuses on reaching out to students in schools, and leading seminars that cover a wide array of topics, including growth and development issues, HIV prevention counseling, special counseling for HIV positive students, career guidance, counseling for multiple sexual partnerships, and more. These health seminars are lead by staff from the Youth Center along with trained health workers, as well as senior teachers from the schools.
3. Sports & Games for SRH Programs: Organized sports activities with health themes (family planning, condom awareness) targeted at youth who are out of school.
Sports and Games for the SRH programs targets out-of-school adolescents, attracting youth to create an avenue through which issues of sexual reproductive health can be discussed. Issues discussed include family planning, GBV, Condom awareness, and more. Every sports activity organized has a specific health-related theme. Involved in these sports activities are community leaders from the particular area. There is always 1 female and 1 male community leader present. The community leaders are well respected and help facilitate discussion. Trained health workers also accompany the counselors and community leaders to answer any specific health-related questions and to clear any confusion about health issues.
4. Condom Awareness Sessions: Targets out-of-school youth using an ABC approach to educate them about responsible sexual health practices
Condom Awareness Programs target mainly out-of-school adolescents that may not have had extensive sexual health education. The program takes an ABC approach on educating youth about responsible sexual practices, with an emphasis on correct and consistent condom usage.
5. Outreach to Persons With Disabilities (PWD) and Young Positives: Targets vulnerable, stigmatized youth who are victims of the war-torn climate of Northern Uganda.
Outreaches to PWDs and Young Positives target the more vulnerable, neglected, and stigmatized youth populations. This includes both in-school and out-of-school adolescents. Due to the war-torn climate of Northern Uganda, and the failure of schools and the government to address the special needs of this demographic, programs with PWDs are essential. These is a focus on counseling, sexual health education, condom education, and more. Programs with Young Positives focus on “positive prevention.” This places an emphasis on drug adherence, correct and consistent condom usage, and positive living. Also, being a particularly vulnerable sector of the population, Young Positives are given continuous counseling/
6. Sanitary Pad Distribution: Pads are a rare commodity in Uganda. Girls without pads are known to face discrimination in school, and will often miss one week to school a month to avoid embarrassment. This creates an education gap as girls fall more and more behind.
The Sanitary Pad Distribution is designed to support both in and out-of-school young girls with sanitary pads. Girls that aren’t provided with sanitary pads are known to face much discrimination and embarrassment while in school or in public, and many times will miss school altogether. It is also known for many girls to commit to sexual favors with different men to acquire sanitary pads, resulting in very high-risk behavior. This program is designed to help solve this problem, by reducing the risk of young girls getting infected and/or pregnant, and allowing them to avoid discrimination.
These programs will provide the youth with information and resources about sexual health that they would not otherwise receive. The project aims to affect over 1000 youth in the Nwoya District.