Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda

by The Nyaka AIDS Orphans Project
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Support 120 survivors of sexual violence in Uganda
Group Therapy at Kihihi EDJA Healing Center
Group Therapy at Kihihi EDJA Healing Center

Mental health is a critical component for any survivor of Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV). Counseling programs play a crucial role in any survivor's healing process. Our team has done an amazing job introducing different ways for survivors to receive counseling including home based counseling, school based counseling, counseling at Healing Centers, group therapy, and even phone therapy.

Offering multiple ways for survivors and their families to access counseling services, allows us to meet their needs and to ensure they’re getting what they need to move them forward through recovery.

Sometimes after a girl or young woman is assaulted, they discover they’re having a child as a result of their assault. Group therapy often allows girls and young women facing the same trauma to come together and help each other through the healing process. Unfortunately, these young mothers often face challenges providing for their children

Recently, after a group therapy session at the Kihihi Healing Center, all the young mothers went home with resources for their babies. They all left therapy with smiles on their faces because their babies each received clothes, a wash basin, nappies, baby powder, blankets, bed sheets, a mattress, baby bathing soaps, baby carriers, and more. 

Thank you!

Individual Survivor Therapy Session
Individual Survivor Therapy Session

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Seven-year-old Balinda along with two other children were sent to a family member's house during the day. After being there all day, it was too late to leave, so they trustingly stayed the night. In the middle of the night while sleeping, Balinda’s life changed. While staying at the exact same family member’s house Belinda and the other children were staying at to avoid the dangers of walking home at night, Belinda was sexually assaulted. Her very own relative physically assaulted and threatened her.

When Belinda returned home, she didn’t immediately tell anyone about what had happened because she feared for her life. About a week later, her mother noticed something was wrong. She sat Belinda down and Belinda courageously told her mother everything. It was clear Belinda wasn’t physically ok and her mother brought her to a Nyaka Healing Center. At the Healing Center, Belinda received medical treatment and both she and her mom were counseled through the emotions of this heartbreaking situation. Nyaka is working with Belinda to help her find both physical and mental healing. While healing, Belinda nor her mom will have to worry about the costs of seeking help and justice.

During the month of December, our Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) program registered 10 new cases. SGBV program Director, Tabitha Mpamira, quotes Yoko Ono saying, “Nyaka and the SGBV program believe in working in the community, because lasting change can only happen when we are all engaged. ‘Healing yourself is connected with healing others.’”

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Survivors with their children and baby items
Survivors with their children and baby items

Since COVID-19 mandated lockdowns went into effect on April 1st, as is the case globally, cases of sexual and gender-based violence have increased in our communities during and after lockdown. Our SGBV staff is continuing to support survivors and provide them with access to medical care, counseling, and legal support to bring their perpetrators to justice. 

Within the last month, under the SGBV program, Nyaka arrested seven perpetrators. Helping to bring some peace, comfort, and justice to survivors. We’ve also registered several pregnant teenage girls who conceived as a result of rape. To help these survivors, survivors received a combination of baby clothes, bedding, soap, basins, nappies, carriers, and more. Our Program Coordinator Brendah said,  “They [Survivors] were all so happy and they all felt that they were really loved.”

Thank you for helping make the work we do possible to break the cycle of sexual assault in Rural Uganda.


To learn more about our SGBV program, watch SGBV program Director, Tabitha Mpamira, featured on Now This.

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Brendah providing counseling to a survivor
Brendah providing counseling to a survivor

COVID-19 mandated lockdowns have caused the number of sexual and domestic violence occurrences to rise significantly. Uganda has been under a very strict nationwide lockdown since April 1st which has meant many survivors are forced to stay at home with their abusers. Last month, police estimated 3,280 recorded domestic violence cases. This is an increase of about 188% compared to monthly reported cases in 2019.

The United Nations has called for urgent action to combat the worldwide increase in domestic violence. Nyaka remains committed to providing free medical care, counseling, and legal advocacy services at no cost to all survivors. Nyaka’s Sexual & Gender-Based Violence Program Coordinator, Brendah Aryatugumya, and has continued offering survivors the counseling they need through dedicated phone lines. We are distributing posters in English and Rukiga to raise awareness of these issues and encourage survivors to access support. We are also working to raise additional funds to enable us to provide survivors with safehouses in order to remove them from the home or vicinity of their abusers.

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Trainers met with police to share forensic tips
Trainers met with police to share forensic tips

In the past few months, your support has led to exciting developments for EDJA! You helped build two additional healing centers for survivors of sexual assault, bringing the total number of EDJA healing centers to four.

Additionally, your support brought two sexual and gender-based violence experts to Nyaka for intensive workshops on supporting survivors of sexual assault, recognizing the warning signs of gender-based violence, and collecting early forensic evidence. These workshops had a 99% attendance rate and reached grandmothers, grandfathers, and professionals from across the region!

Thanks to you, we are well on our way to transforming the EDJA healing centers into holistic SARCs (sexual assault referral centers). By connecting doctors, counselors, and police, EDJA can emphasize survivor-focused policies. These centers are the first in Uganda and will provide survivors with medical care, counseling, and legal support all in the same place, saving survivors from the shame and trauma of reporting directly to the police.

Because of your donations, more survivors than ever have access to these incredible resources for free. Thank you for all you do! 

Police and health professionals collaborated
Police and health professionals collaborated
EDJA rockstar Brendah helped train grandmothers
EDJA rockstar Brendah helped train grandmothers

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Organization Information

The Nyaka AIDS Orphans Project

Location: East Lansing, MI - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @ Nyakaglobal
Project Leader:
Gayle Clifford
Okemos, MI United States
$18,427 raised of $35,000 goal
 
366 donations
$16,573 to go
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