During the year we have had several Achievement
CARA has successfully implemented different projects in relation to her mission vision and objectives. The projects implemented created linkages and strengthened referral systems and improved coordination and networking. These activities range from OVC support, HIV prevention care and treatment, economic strengthening, women and children’s rights, food security and nutrition, improvement of access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation, sexual reproductive health, promotion of access to quality education, human rights, governance and accountability. The projects implemented are both static and community based in nature, engaging communities to demand for quality services, community out reaches i.e. taking services nearer to the beneficiaries who are in most cases vulnerable.
Some of the projects implemented by CARA include; Promotion of women and children rights for HIV prevention in Buhweju district funded by Independent Development Fund (IDF) (2012-2013). The project reached 13,525 people with Human rights and HIV prevention messages.
With funding from KIOS (Finnish NGO Foundation for Human Rights), CARA implemented a four years project (2009-2012) campaign against domestic violence and violation of other human and civil rights reaching 21,600 people with Human Rights Messages and gender issues. In partnership with Civil Society Fund, CARA implemented the HIV Prevention through Behavior Change Communication project in Kayunga and Mukono Districts 2008-2011, the project targeted sex workers, young people in and out of school, married couples and those in long term sexual relations. Further with funding from the CSF, CARA reached 2000 OVC and 500 households with basic support in Education, food security and nutrition, psycho-social and legal support under the project “strengthening capacity of OVC and service providers for quality service delivery in Kayunga District” (2009-2012). In collaboration with AHF-Uganda Cares, CARA has continued to implement HIV counseling and testing out reaches targeting Fisher folks, and people in mobile markets over 15000 people have been reached with HCT services (2009 to 2015) CARA with support from Horst Gerhard a Germany National has mobilized 41 OVC households in Kayunga town council trained and given them piglets for economic strengthening. CARA has implemented combination HIV prevention project (2012-2015) in Mayuge district funded by the Civil Society Fund .The project has fully engaged and empowered communities in Mayuge district to demand and utilize HIV prevention and other health services such as PMTCT, HCT, Family Planning, condoms, women economic strengthening and Immunization, services among others.
In addition, CARA is managing a two years project governance, accountability participation and performance (GAPP) program in healthy sector in Kayunga district funded by USAID and UKaid. Through existing community based structures like Village Health Teams (VHTs), Community child rights protection committees, women groups and associations,, youth groups and clubs like boda-boda groups, Beach Management Units for fisher folks, cultural institutions and Health units management committees CARA has managed to mobilize, sensitize and empower communities to demand for quality services in their respective communities. CARA trained the above groups’ representatives to improve their skills, knowledge and competencies in development and expressing their needs into concerns. These groups have participated in different forum; this has caused duty bearers especially local council leaders, health workers, teachers to take action in improving quality services of communities especially for women and children due to pressure exerted by communities through collective voices. In addition, CARA increased community voices to demand for quality services through community dialogues, quarterly and annual reviews, through the above interactions, duty bearers have been brought together in different capacities like health sector, political sectors to attend to their needs for improved quality health and social services
In order to strengthen community voices especially for vulnerable groups like youths, women and children CARA formed health clubs targeting mostly young people out of school, these clubs meet regularly to present their needs to their youth representatives, organized sports competitions for young people to advocate for youth friendly services as result, two youth groups in Mayuge district, Kigandalo Sub county benefitted from youth livelihoods funds to start up goats projects for poverty eradication
Through community engagement, child rights protection committees have been formed at sub county levels in districts of Kayunga and Buhweju. Members of the committees meet monthly to share human rights issues and advocate for their rights in different areas like education rights for children and health rights for all.
In 2011, CARA participated in the OVC mapping exercise which was facilitated by Bantwana through Kayunga district local government specifically the CBSD. In relation, CARA is a member of DOVCC, SOVCC and DAC in Kayunga, Mayuge and Buhweju districts
In addition, using community mobilization strategies like community mapping, CARA mobilized 500 households in Kayunga district with a burden of Orphans and other vulnerable children and strengthened their capacities in social services, like advocating for their children’s rights in education, food security and legal rights of orphans and other vulnerable children, with that cause, 2000 children were empowered in improvement of better social services in areas of health, education, child protection, food and nutrition security and legal support
CARA with her long term community mobilization, empowerment and advocacy competencies was selected by Ministry of health through the Office of the DHO-Buhweju district to work with ACODE, CODES project to accelerate the reduction of under 05 mortality in the district. Community and District Empowerment for scale up (CODES) project aimed at targeting health systems and not individuals so that communities in Buhweju receive and increase the use of health services, through Community Dialogues and the Citizens Report Card; communities were empowered to demand for better health services in order to reduce on the number of children below 05 years who die of pneumonia, diarrhea and Malaria
CARA advocates for the rights of People Living with HIV through peaceful community matches, these events are always observed during international advocacy events for PLHIV, such as world AIDS, during the world AIDS day 2014, CARA organized a peaceful match where PLHIV were advocating for their rights to drugs after we realized that ARVs were out of stock in Kigandalo HCIV and Mayuge HCIII for a Quarter.
With funding from USAID/Uganda LARA, CARA is currently implementing an 18 months project entitled “USAID/Uganda Literacy Achievement and Retention Activity in Kayunga district with the goal of improving EGR and retention for pupils in 149 UPE schools in Kayunga district. Under this USAID/LARA project, CARA intends to bring the school and community together to improve parents and other family members involvement in their children’s reading practice through social behavior change communications (SBCC) and also addressing and preventing school-related gender-based violence (SRGBV) by establishing community-based case management and engaging all community members in reflection and participatory activities from the journeys; social behavior change communications directed toward reducing violence such as corporal punishment, bullying, physical abuse and violence to improve on the application of positive discipline in the targeted 149 schools in focus 08 sub counties of Kayunga district.
With the goal of reducing on the number of new HIV infections among men and women for improved livelihoods in Buhweju District, CARA is implementing 5 years USAID RHITES – SW project entitled “Scaling up comprehensive HIV prevention services among youth, adolescents, migrant workers and discordant couples in 02 Sub Counties of Karungu and Burere Buhweju district” The project is increasing demand for HIV prevention, care, and treatment services and escalating access and utilization of other health services like Malaria, Sexual Reproductive health, MNCH, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Nutrition and Early Infant Diagnosis (EID). The above are achieved through carrying out integrated health community outreaches, use of existing community structures like youth clubs, PLHIV networks, Family support groups VHTs and government aided HCs, Women groups and associations, Religious and political institutions for mobilizations, sensitizations and peer education.
With funding from Embassy of Japan in Uganda (2016 – 2017) CARA has improved access to safe water in 20 government aided primary schools in Buhweju district through the construction of rain water harvesting tanks.
In partnership with Positive Action for Children’s Fund (PACF), CARA is implementing a project entitled “Integrating and scaling up PMTCT services through enhancing community engagement” in three sub counties of Galiraya, Bbaale and Kayonza focusing on pregnant women and non pregnant women, couples, adolescent girls and young women, Infants and children. The goal of the project is to improve to access of quality PMTCT services in the targeted three sub counties of Kayunga district. The project also promotes access and utilization of HIV Counseling and testing services among targeted groups, strengthening community to facility referrals and linkages, promoting adherence to ART and increased uptake of ANC services among the targeted beneficiaries
All the above success have been attributed to the strong qualified, experienced, skilled and committed technical staff all working harmoniously with districts and lower community counterparts. CARA staff have always formed program(s) advisory committee and applied tested best practices and provided reliable back stoppin