Scholars display their tie-dyed fabrics
Our scholars in a tie-dye class at the Makika Stylz School, where they are pursuing Certificates in Tailoring and Product Development. After delicately tying cloth into many small gatherings, they dip the fabric into dye to produce a beautiful material for clothing or home decoration. The cloth is tied in different ways, resulting in the diverse patterns shown in the photo above, where our scholars hold up their tie-dyed fabrics.
One of our first scholars, hoping to revive his dream of becoming a software engineer
David first learned he was HIV-positive in May 2011, when he had an HIV test at the Naguru Teenage Centre. For him, this unfortunate news was not as shocking as it could have been, thanks to his counselor who had prepared him adequately. “I felt normal and lived my life without much anxiety,” he recalls.
Certain that he had contracted the disease through unprotected sex, he had the courage to disclose his status to The New Vision, a national newspaper. “This way, I wanted to send out a message to my fellow youth, urging them to stay safe by abandoning risky behavior such as irresponsible sex and drug abuse which had contributed to my fate.”
At only 22, David is married with a one-month old baby. His wife has a micro-enterprise while he earns a meager amount of money from his family’s animal farm. Both he and his wife are members of the Infectious Diseases Institute Transition Clinic, which he considers the best center for HIV/AIDS treatment and care.
“I joined the Scholarship Program with a primary aim of reviving my dream which I thought had hit a dead end when I ran short of university tuition a year ago,” David explains.
With the support of the Scholarship Program, David is pursuing a diploma in Network Administration, which he suggests is a big step towards achieving his goal. Ultimately, he wants to become a software engineer. An ambitious youth, Twinomujuni at least wants to open a computer café when he completes his course in network administration. He hopes to attain a degree in software engineering when broader doors of opportunity open.
To him, this scholarship is, “just the beginning of greater achievements.”
Program Update: Our first scholars have been selected!
Scholarships for HIV+ Young Adults in Uganda provides one-year scholarships for selected HIV-positive young adults (ages 18 – 24) that attend the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI) Transition Clinic, enabling them to participate in vocational training programs, including practical internships to support pathways to gainful employment and, in turn, become self-reliant and enjoy rewarding careers. The Transition Clinic was created in recognition of the unique clinical and psychosocial needs of young adults infected with HIV. With over 800 registered and active young adults now in care, IDI can now focus on the young adults’ other needs, key among them being education. The majority of young adults attending the clinic at IDI have dropped out-of-school as a result of lack of financial support from their caretakers.
During the first quarter, the Program Team spent significant time identifying and establishing partnerships with vocational training institutes and programs that would meet the needs of the young adults enrolled in this program. For the first phase, twenty young adults were selected through a competitive process out of forty-two candidates that submitted applications. Standard selection criteria included:
- Passion for the vocational course applied for, which was expressed by the candidates in a statement of intent.
- Degree of motivation, career intentions, and reasons for wanting to pursue their desired vocational course.
- Prior educational or vocational courses, and work or volunteer experience.
- Clinical assessment on general well-being, adherence to clinic visits and drug treatment.
- A signed commitment statement from the candidate’s caretakers stating their willingness to support the candidates throughout the duration of the program.
The vocational training programs began in September 2012 and will run for a period of 9 months. Thereafter, the vocational training institutions will offer practical internships to further their skills. Scholars are pursuing the vocational training programs listed below.
Malaika School of Hair and Beauty: www.malaikabeautyschool.com
Makika Stylz School of Tailoring and Product Development:
Jimmy Sekasi Institute of Catering: www.jimmysekasicatering.com
Techno Brain -New Horizons Computer Learning Centers:
Uganda Film and Television Institute: www.ufti.co.ug
Lugogo Vocational Training Institute for Electrical Installation
Your gift to support our scholars allows young adults living with HIV to pursue their dreams and become self-sufficient. With advances in medicine, young people with HIV don’t have to feel that different than their uninfected peers. By supporting these young people you are giving them the boost they need to overcome the setbacks they’ve faced as a result of the time and costs of their HIV care.
Your donations are supporting tuition for hands-on, vocational training programs, career tool kits that include all supplies needed to pursue training and start careers once training is completed, small stipends for school lunches and transport so scholars can focus on learning, and dedicated support from our team of mentors, counselors, and clinicians that help our scholars stay healthy and motivated.
All future donations will support the next group of scholars. Help us reach our goal of 25 new scholars!
*Names have been changed to protect the identity of the scholars