Jesus said that he came so that we may have life abundantly (Jn 10:10). There are many brothers and sisters whose life is impaired by a number of diseases.
MUPHECA Project is a community based effort created to address the enormous challenges faced by people living with HIV/AIDS and children orphaned by the same pandemic. This project was founded by Fr. Gerard Nnamunga in 2003. It uses Mulago Catholic Parish structures, but it is for all people regardless of their beliefs provided they are within Mulago parish. The project is registered by Kampala City Council.
Our Mission is first and foremost to fight the spread of HIV/AIDS and secondly to create and promote a caring community that can support, assist and look after people living with HIV/AIDS and children orphaned by AIDS.
Our Vision is to reduce the prevalence of HIV/AIDS and see to it that children orphaned by AIDS get education.
The Objectives of MUPHECA Project can be summarised a follows:
• Prevention of HIV/AIDS transmission by promoting behaviour change.
• Support and care for those infected and affected by HIV/AIDS.
• Promotion of voluntary counselling and testing.
• Mitigation of the social problems of HIV/AIDS.
• Promotion of a caring community.
• Provision of education for children orphaned by AIDS.
MUPHECA Project carried out a number of activities which include:
1. Registration of People Living with HIV/AIDS: To date 120 people have been registered. In addition 50 children orphaned by AIDS have been registered. The clients have been retested to ensure that only those who are HIV positive benefit from the Project. So far, 12 people have proven to be HIV negative.
2. Meetings: Every fortnight we have a meeting for the entire client population. During these meetings, counsellors provide them with advice of how to live positively with HIV/AIDS. In addition, members share their experiences about how they contracted the disease, the problems they face and how they have tried to overcome them. These meetings have been very useful and have created a sense of solidarity among the members as a result members see themselves as a family rather than as a group. The following are some of the topics we have discussed:
4. Education of Children Orphaned by AIDS. It has not been easy to select children for sponsorship due to the limited resources. We have identified 21 sponsors from the UK who sponsor 21 children with school fees. The rest are given scholastic materials once a term. We are limited by resources, we can assist more children if we get more sponsors.
Mupheca Drama Group
The Project has carried out a number of activities and one of the main activities is educational entertainment performed by MUPHECA Drama Group. The first performance was at the launching of the Project. The main objective is to educate the public about the dangers of HIV/AIDS. It helps the members to relax and recreate. It conveys the message in a more vivid and touching way since the members sing, act and talk from experience.
Special emphasis has been put on the sensitization of children. The need to sensitise these children is enhanced by the fact that some head teachers of Primary Schools have expressed their worries concerning young girls who do not complete their primary education due to pregnancy. This group has visited many primary schools within Mulago parish. We are grateful to some donors whose identity can not be revealed who made this visitation possible.
Members of the group mostly women are engaged in handcraft. They are making beads some which are now sold to the USA.