It Is Possible To Bring Healthcare To A Village

As Valentine’s Day knocked on our doors, Youth Rising was discussing ways on how we can spread more love to the people we dearly love (our community members). Did you know that in some parts of Mukono District, people are 10-15 miles away from a public health center? This makes it difficult for people to access basic treatment and care, especially for mothers and children.

 

A nurse gives a vaccine shot to an infant during the Community Care Clinic Outreach

 

Promotion of access to preventative healthcare for youth and women is one of the pillars of our work at Youth Rising. And our commitment is to promote access to quality health care services by partnering with government health care centers and other health service providers. In that regard, we create 1-2 day local care clinics that aggregate such services and bring them close to the community.

On February 10th, 2019, we launched a Facebook fundraising campaign to bring healthcare to our village (Mpumu-Salaama), in Mukono District. The donations received in this process, coupled with the Youth Health Ambassadors Program, which is funded by Alert Funds for Youth, enabled us to carry out the 2nd Community Care Clinic at Youth Rising Mukono in 2019.

It should be remembered very well that our first community care clinic at Youth Rising Mukono happened on the 1st of January 2019, during the Youth Health Gala. The Music, Dance, Drama and Sports Gala focused on better health outcomes for young people. Organized by Youth Health Ambassadors, the gala brought together 300 community members who watched theatre plays, listened to songs and watched drama focused on sexual reproductive health. The community members also participated in HIV/AIDS testing and counseling and received family planning services, all offered for free by our local hospital partner, Herona Hospital Limited.

 

Youth Health Ambassadors during the mobilizing people to attend the first Community Care Clinic Outreach

On the 25th of February 2019, we conducted our second monthly outreach at our center in Mukono which was focused on Immunization of children. This activity was jointly conducted in partnership with Ntenjeru-Kojja Health Center IV, a government public health center that serves Ntenjeru Subcounty, Mukono district. At this outreach, the nurses from Ntenjeru-Kojja Health Center IV offered various services including immunization services to children under 5, HPV vaccination to girls of 10 years and deworming tablets given to children. Immunization helps to protect children and the whole community against dangerous diseases like influenza, Hepatitis B, diarrhea, measles, tuberculosis, pneumonia, polio among others. This is a successful and effective public health intervention.

 

Some of the Youth Health Ambassadors Mobilize People To Come For The 2nd Community Care Clinic Outreach

Impact Map

Total No. of Participants in Attendance 213
No. of Participants Who Were Children & Youth 179
No. of Participants Who Were Adults 25
Youth Who Attended ASRH sessions 60

Adults Who Attended SRH sessions

25
Total No. of Children Immunized 81
Total No. of Children Given Deworming Tabs 38
Total No. of Youth Ambassadors 7

 

The unique and interesting aspect of this activity is that it was organized and coordinated by youth who have just graduated from the Youth Health Ambassadors Program (YOHAP). The 7 Youth Health Ambassadors who coordinated the event with our program team spent about 2 days moving door to door, informing the community members about the event and rallying community leaders to spread the message.

 

The Youth Health Ambassadors also participated in the reception and registration of participants.

 

The ambassadors also spoke to the local schools and requested them to send children and parents for the free services. During the outreach, the Youth Ambassadors also conducted sessions on adolescent sexual reproductive health and the importance of immunization. The ambassadors owning this activity from planning to implementation is a true testimony of how young people can be at the center of powering their own community transformation. The ambassadors continue to lead health interventions in the community and cannot wait to organize the next Community Care Clinic outreach which will happen in April.

 

Tonny, one of the most committed Youth Health Ambassador, facilitating  a session on Sexual Reproductive Health

 

We would like to express our deepest gratitude to all people in Alert Funds for Youth, Friends in Uganda and in Phoenix, Arizona, and all of our collaborators, who are making the Community Care Clinics model a reality.

You can continue bringing healthcare to a village by making a donation here.

 

Author: Sumani Ganafa is Youth Rising’s Regional Team Leader East.