RCRA Uganda in partnership with CHASE Africa is implementing a project to accelerate uptake of numerous family planning methods in hard to reach rural communities in Kasese district of Rwenzori Sub-region. The project will create awareness on the benefits of being able to choose the timing and spacing of children and the family planning methods available thereby accelerating access to contraceptives and other primary health care services.
A sponsored Hike for the Ugandan Child and Family Health through Grandmothers programme took place on Saturday 20th July.
The route was a 9.3 km loop in the Dublin Mountains to a high point known as Fairy Castle – part of the Wicklow Way.
Thirty walkers set off on a fine fresh afternoon under the guidance of trail leaders Matt Bowden and Gabby Duffy for a three- hour trek. The hike took us through beautiful natural forest and hillside with clear views overlooking Dublin city, the Irish sea and as far as the Northern Counties. The event was fun, sociable and was greatly enjoyed by the walkers of all age groups – from 8 months to active retirees! The hike generated great publicity and financial support for the Ugandan Grandmothers programme, bringing the total funds raised closer to the target.
The walk was well supported by TU Dublin Grangegorman colleagues – both present and retired – including The President David FitzPatrick, Ita Coghlan, Anne Marie Fidgeon, Anne Fitzpatrick, Brian Gormley and Kevin O Rourke.
I am extremely grateful for the level of support received from my colleagues for the project
More information on the project and how to donate at https://www.gofundme.com/grandmothers-programme:
The Rwenzori Center for Research and Advocacy has signed partnership agreement with the Ugandan Ministry of Health, both entities shall work together about health care delivery through participatory action research, reproductive, maternal newborn and child health plus nutrition, and capacity building program in communicable (HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and Lung Infections) and Non-Communicable diseases (Cancer, Asthma, diabetes, hypertension and mental health) in western and central districts of Uganda.
……Members of Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage are committed to ending child marriage, a harmful traditional practice that affects millions of children, predominantly girls, every year. As members of Girls Not Brides, we are joining together to accelerate efforts to prevent child marriage, and to support girls who are or have been married, all over the world.
Girls Not Brides will amplify the voices of girls at risk of child marriage and defend the rights of girls to health, education and the opportunity to fulfil their potential. In line with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, we believe that 18 should be the minimum age of marriage for boys and girls.
In working to end child marriage, we believe that social change cannot succeed without community engagement.
The programme aims to develop integrated supports to grandmothers in Uganda who are caring for children and grandchildren affected by HIV/AIDS and poverty.
Grandmothers are indispensable to the survival of children and families in Uganda due to high rates of deaths from HIV/AIDS, maternal deaths and the abandonment of children by young, teenage mothers. Yet, they remain largely invisible to government and NGOs and are not direct beneficiaries of any funding programme. They face constant struggle to feed grandchildren, pay school fees and maintain their own health.
This RCRA’s flagship one year programme will be evaluated with a view to scaling it up. The kernel of the programme is the formation of groups of grandmothers in rural villages in the greater Kasese area and the delivery of an integrated programme of health, education support and livelihood support. The programme is innovative in targeting grandmothers, having a strong self-help ethos, and an intergenerational element whereby older people and school children will learn from each other. Examples of supports are: school fees and educational supports for children; transport in remote inaccessible areas, home visits; developing kitchen gardens; and the provision of re-usable sanitary pads for girls as menstruation often prevents girls from attending school in Kasese District.