RACOBAO with support from global giving supports breast feeding mothers who are PLHIV and are enrolled on Anti Retroviral Therapy. The mothers who are living with HIV were motivated by availability of Prevention of Mother-To-Child Transmission of HIV (PMTCT) services in Uganda which support parents with HIV to have children who are HIV negative. However, to achieve PMTCT objectives, good feeding options for both mothers and their children is key in minimizing the risk of HIV transmission from parents to their children.
Nabukeera Annet has story to make her smile.
Nabuukeera Annet (35yrs) with a family of five children was widowed in 2009 after her husband succumbed to HIV&AIDS and left her with a pregnancy of 4 months. Nabuukeera started Antiretroviral treatment as soon as she had started receiving antenatal services from Lyantonde hospital but her main challenge was feeding her family because she was always weak and unable to fed for her family. Nabukeera says: “But what depressed me the more was transmitting HIV to my child during breast feeding,” Nabukeera lamented after having the HIV test results which indicated that her daughter was HIV negative.
Nabukeera attributes this, to the food support she got from RACOBAO.” After getting rice and maize flour from RACOBAO I was assured of food for my family and this encouraged me to wean off my child and started feeding her on this food”, Nabukeera said. Nabuukera is one of the 300 women being support by RACOBAO with funding from global giving.
RACOBAO through the Global Giving website has received a donation of $74.00 to support AIDS Affected Households with food. This donation is going to further benefit breast feeding mothers and their children on ARVs who have been affected by the severe famine. Joviet Babirye is one of the mothers who was supported with food relief items in the past. Joviet was a breast feeding mother who was enrolled on ARVs since 2005. During the severe drought followed by famine that hit Joviet’s village, she was unable to fend for her family of 6 children. They could not afford 2 meals a day a condition that almost led her to discontinue the uptake of ARVs. But after the food relief items, she was not only able to feed her family , breastfeed her then 5 months old baby but also her adherence to ARVs improved. Joviet stopped breasting her baby at 6 months. The baby is now 18 months. The baby was recently tested for HIV and found negative. Joviet’s family is going to be one of the beneficiaries of food items to be bought using the recently received funds from global giving. The food relief will supplement her low harvests. “I am forever grateful to global giving” says a jovial joviet after learning that she is one of the beneficiaries again.
Prima Musiimire 35 a mother to 2 children; Nathan 8 and Shamira 2 are all HIV positive and on ARVs. This family is one of the beneficiaries of 20 kgs of rice distributed by RACOBAO in the last quarter. The rice was bought from funds raised through Global Giving and benefited over 50 families each getting 20 kgs. A few months later, RACOBAO made a follow up visit to some of the families that benefited.
One of such stories is of Prima Musiimire;
A jovial prima is still very grateful for the support from global giving. The rice on average lasted a period of 3 months during which she had no worries about what to feed her children on. She is happy that it improved their livelihoods and adherence to the drugs they are taking. She said rice is easy to cook especially during times when she is sick yet still obliged to prepare food for her children as she has no helper. Prima thanks all those who donated towards this cause and kindly appeals for more support as it adds a ray of hope to live knowing someone out there cares.
RACOBAO through the Global Giving website received a donation of 1,889, 845/= (One million eight hundred eighty nine thousand eight hundred fourty five Uganda shillings) in March 2010 and purchased 700 kgs of Rice to benefit 35 HIV positive breast feeding mothers and children on ARVs. This has helped support their drug intake (adherence). Each received 20 kgs of rice expected to take them through the next 2 months. This is supplemented by their insufficient home grown food. Having enough food is a requirement before taking ARVs and it boosts their immunity thus reducing the adverse side effects that would have been caused by HIV.
Some of such success stories are of Mubiru Yusuf;
Mubiru Yusuf a 10 year old boy is a child living with HIV and on Anti Retroviral Treatment. He is the fourth and last child to Nakabuga Jalia (His mother) who is also living with HIV. “Yusuf gets too weak without food especially during severe famine in the village; a drought prone area” says the mother. Yusuf and the mother are very grateful for the food relief through Global giving.
Caroline Ninsiima is 30 years old woman living with HIV. Her child Doreen is a one year old girl who also has HIV and taking Septrin but not yet on Anti retroviral treatment. This is due to her boosted immunity partially due to the food relief from the previous donations from RACOBAO through Global giving (Maize flour and Rice). Caroline says the 20kgs of rice received would take her through the next 2 months since she has a big family. She says Doreen's appetite has improved. She is very thankful for the donation from Global giving.
RACOBAO through the Global Giving website received a donation and purchased 4,000 bags of maize flour to benefit 85 breast feeding mothers on ARVs who had been affected by the severe famine.
The impact was tremendous. The breast feeding mothers were able to continue with the uptake of their ARVs because they could afford 2 meals of food a day. Consequently they were also able to continue with breastfeeding their babies. The food on average sustained the identified families for a period of 1 to 2 months untill late February 2010. The breast feeding mothers regained their strength and could hence weed, prune and harvest from their gardens during this period.
One of such success stories is of Babirye Joviet;
Babirye Joviet is a breast feeding mother who was enrolled on ARVs since 2005. 2 months ago when Lyantonde suffered a severe drought followed by famine, Joviet was one of the beneficiaries of 50 kgs of maize flour fundraised through the global giving website. The proposal with the help the District Health Officer, was submitted to support HIV positive breast feeding mothers.
The maize flour was of great impact. It sustained her family of six for 2 months until they were able to reap from their previous harvests. Joviet has gained more weight; the baby girl of 5 months looks healthy and strong.
Joviet exclaims “I was in a predicament because I was on ARVs yet had no food to eat. Worse still, I was breast feeding my daughter of 3 months then. The rest of my children also needed food daily. Thanks to RACOBAO and well wishers through Global giving for the timely relief. I gained strength which helped me to till my land when the rains came. I can now feed my family with the maize and the irish potatoes I harvested.”
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