TASO started working in Gulu district - northern Uganda - in 2004. It began its operations during the time of war waged by the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA). It originally provided counseling and general medical treatment within the Gulu Regional Referral Hospital, to war victims battling trauma and severe injuries sustained during raids on homes and displaced people's camps. With the prolonged war, increased cases of rape, defilement and displacement, Gulu registered a very high number of HIV cases when the rest of the country had low HIV prevalence. The Center also provided a night sleeping area for children who would have otherwise slept on the streets away from their parents in the displaced people's camps or the bushes for fear of being abducted. Today, Gulu Center stands along Matthew Lukwiya Road next to Gulu hospital and has one of the best laboratories in the district.
Gulu is along the transport route to Juba, South Sudan. It is mostly remembered for suffering the brunt of the LRA war. There are still some displaced people's camps, as well as refugees from the neighboring South Sudan. However, there are areas where families have returned to their land and are growing food for sale.
By June 2018, TASO Gulu had served and improved the lives of 7,889 clients on Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAAT) 5,465 (female) and 2,434 (male), their families and communities. It operates within a 75 km (radius) catchment area covering the districts of Oyam, Omoro, Pader, Amuru and Nwoya by 36 full time staff and 16 volunteers.
TASO(Center) Gulu contributes to the TASO vision of a world without HIV and AIDS by providing a comprehensive package through the following services to children, adolescents, youth and adults (as appropriate);
- Psychosocial Services: (adherence counseling, condom/lubricant education and distribution, Gender Based Violence screening, peer counseling, risk reduction counseling, behavior change communication, referral for other psychosocial needs not provided such as economic needs and education)
- Clinical Services: (Nutrition monitoring, adherence measurement, Tuberculosis screening, Opportunistic Infections examinations if any, Laboratory investigation (Viral Load and CD4 count); weight monitoring, Mental Health screening.
It has also been involved in a number of research studies and collaborations such as;
- “Anyakamakwiri”, Youth Power Action supported under the USAID through Family Health International. This was a six month short project assessing physical and acceptability of mentoring program of Adolescent Girls and Young Women (AGYW) in coordination with the then program of DREAMS in Gulu District in Northern Uganda. It targeted to reach out to 500 AGYW.
- Pediatric Adolescent AIDS Treatment for Africa.(PATA) under the REACH project. REACH is a peer support model which integrates young people living with HIV as peers supporters with in Health facilities to improve HIV Treatment and care services for and Treatment outcomes. It’s supporting Adolescents living with HIV ranging from 10 – 19 years. It’s a three years program. (REACH 2018 – 2020)
- Mobile Services ART Delivery (MoSAD) model. This is an ART model that targets the Cooperate class, where TASO Gulu reaches out to this special categories of the working class i.e. of Politicians, Business men and women, Civil servants etc with a comprehensive ART services at places of their convenience with in Gulu Municipality especially after 5,00pm and weekends. This program started early this year, and to date 45 Cooperate clients have been enrolled and are accessing their ART services under this Model.
The Center is headed by a Center Programme Manager who is supported by 5 heads of departments which are Counselling, Medical, Human Resources, Finance and Monitoring and Evaluation.
The Center has a Center Advisory Committee (CAC) made up of 9 members headed by a Chairperson. This is the Center/Community arm of the TASO Organisational Board of Trustees.
The Center also has Clients' Council made up of 9 members headed by a Chairperson. This is the governing decision making body for all the clients served at the Center whether at the facility or in outreach clinics such as Community Drug Distribution Points.
The Center's major sources of funding include;
- USAID through RHITES North Acholi
Call to membership
You too can make a difference in the lives of people infected and affected by becoming a TASO Subscriber Member. One can become an individual or corporate member and make an annual subscription towards a basket fund. This basket fund was set up to cater for budgeted items that are not covered by the donors.
As a fully registered TASO Subscriber Member you are eligible, among other things, if nominated and elected, to serve on the Center Advisory Committee and eventually the TASO Board of Trustees.
An Annual General Meeting is held every September to give accountability not only to the donors but to the Subscriber Members as well.
Center Programme Manager
Mobile: +256 752 774 142