Community Health

Within the Community health thematic area, VAD is implementing the following interventions;

  • Improve Access to Safe Water Sources, Improved Hygiene and Sanitation
  • Promote Reproductive Health
  • Promote best hygiene practices in schools
  • Promote HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control

Improve Access to Safe Water Sources, Improved Hygiene and Sanitation

Within this intervention, VAD focuses on promotion of access to safe water and improvement of sanitation and hygiene within the communities through;

  • Construction of safe shallow wells for community utilization or water jars for elderly vulnerable persons whose advanced age cannot enable them move out of their homes to look for water.
  • Construction of latrines in targeted communities and vulnerable individual beneficiaries i.e. elderly persons and schools as major beneficiaries.
  • Sensitization of communities about hygiene management best practices within communities through specific sensitization training with respect to basic safe hygiene practices such as washing their hands with soap and water after visiting the latrines.
  • Dissemination of awareness messages such as “Soka kunaba mungalo nga tonalya”.
  • Mobilization of Water User Committees (WUCs) and School Health Clubs and training them in best practices.
  • Provision of water tanks in schools where possible.

These interventions are expected to contribute to increased and improved access to latrine coverage and a reduction in incidences of poor hygiene and poor sanitation related diseases such as: diarrhea and worm infestations.

Promote best hygiene practices in schools

This is one of the thematic areas that VAD is implementing. Learning environment within schools in Uganda is characterized by shortages in infrastructure that includes latrines, classrooms, desks, water and teachers’ houses. Currently, pit latrine coverage stands at 69% nationally while pupil: classroom ratio stands at 68% nationally. However, circumstances within VAD areas of intervention are different and depict poorer performance against national level indicators. VAD is implementing interventions that improve accessibility to latrines and water in schools. Where practically feasible, VAD supports deserving needy schools with classroom construction or teachers’ house construction and also support schools access safe water. This could be through provision of water tanks or through construction of shallow wells or boreholes. If implemented, beneficiary schools will be more hygienic and children will be healthier. In addition, the improved learning environment may improve pupil attendance.

Promote Reproductive Health

Key indicators on Uganda’s reproductive health show that maternal mortality rate per 100,000 live births is 310 while infant mortality rate per 1,000 live births stands at 63 while percentage satisfaction with the health care quality stands at 48. The other challenge is teenage pregnancies and teen age mothers who are faced with lack of resources to take care of themselves and their young children.  According to the 2011 Uganda Demographic and Health survey, more than four in 10 births are unplanned. The mothers blame this on ignorance about family planning services or ill –informed husbands who bar them from accessing the family planning services. Within this sub-thematic area, VAD focuses on interventions that will address gaps within reproductive health. Some of these areas are:

  • Safe sex reproductive education.
  • Right/safe age at which one should become a mother and where one should go to seek help if one is pregnant and other related interventions.

 Promote HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control

HIV/AIDS is still one of the leading causes of death and VAD is implementing interventions that increase community awareness about the HIV/AIDS scourge; specifically how HIV is contracted, how it is managed and how one can prevent ones’ self from contracting this disease. Other topics that will be explored include the impact of HIV/AIDS on the family, community and country at large. VAD will mainstream HIV in the other inventions in order to raise the awareness and consciousness among the beneficiaries to reduce new HIV infections in the targeted areas.