In commemoration of the World AIDS Day 2016 with pomp and swagger, PEERU in partnership with Community Health Alliance Uganda, COYAA, Nakasongola Local government, and PREFHA among other partners organized the 1st Family Planning Concert for Adolescents in Uganda at St. Joseph’s playground, Nakasongola under the Theme: Joining hands to scale up HIV prevention. The READY project Pre-World AIDS Day 2016 celebrations and concert was aimed at scaling up adolescents access to quality HCT and Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights information and services targeting adolescents from key population groups including adolescents selling sex, adolescents using and injecting drugs and adolescents living with HIV. The event took place at
“As the district, we are fully committed towards working with stake holders like PEERU and CHAU to reach out to our adolescents and we fully commit to this program you have launched in our district, I therefore encourage our young people to take advantage of such projects if we are to end HIV prevalence in our Nakasongola” – says Zziwa Moses ADHO
Worldwide, edutainment through entertainment is an interactive and engaging approach when it comes to communicating to adolescents and young people i.e. concerts, flash mobs, street theater, puppetry, music among others. Today, Adolescents are poorly informed about issues concerning HIV and AIDS, STI and Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights making them vulnerable to engaging in risky sexual behaviors. There is a high level of misinformation, myths and misconceptions among adolescents in hard to reach towns and communities since most of them access health information from peers instead of reaching out to trained peer educators for the right information. For example, HIV prevalence and teenage pregnancy is said to be high among rural communities according to the Ministry of Health.
The community was mobilized through community drives, VHT’s, peer educators and a community radio. The concert was graced with district officials including Mr. Zziwa Moses the ADHO of Nakasongola and the Assistant CAO Nakate Edith who represented the office of the district CAO and the CHAU team from Kampala.
The READY project peer educators also provided on-site one on one sessions focusing on HIV prevention and Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights information to bring about behavioral change among adolescents.
The older adolescents and young people were trained on proper and consistent condom use by peer educators, 17128 condoms were distributed including 1000 female and 16128 male condoms, over 2500 people were mobilized for the concert and access to different services that were available at the event, 372 people were tested on both 30th and 1st for HIV and 14 people including 5 adolescents tested HIV positive and were referred to Kakoge Health Centre IV and followed up.
SPECIAL THANKS: Community Health Alliance (CHAU), COYAA and Nakasongola District Council among other partners.