TASO started working in Mbale district - Eastern Uganda - in 1990. It began its operations in a small room that was part of the Tuberculosis ward in Mbale Regional hospital. Its operations were spearheaded by Mrs. Mary Mwiri and Dr. Florence Ebanyat, who had both been affected by HIV in their families. Originally, counseling was done under a mango tree, until 1993, when DANIDA funded the building of an office block on Pallisa Road within Mbale Regional hospital premises. In December 2004, a new building (build close to the old one) was constructed to house the increasing number of clients.
Mbale is predominately known for the culture of male circumcision among its people. It is also known for its trade and Mount Elgon, one of the highest peaks in East Africa. It is a combination of mountainous terrain and slopes of hard to reach areas therefore making it a place which requires a comprehensive package of mobile medical services.
By June 2018, TASO Mbale had served and improved the lives of 7, 522 clients 5,174 (female) and 2,348 (male), their families and communities. It operates within a 75 km radius and its catchment area covers the districts of Mbale, Manafwa, Namisidwa, Sironko, Budaka, Palisa, Butebo, Bukedea, Bududa, Bulambuli, Butaleja, Kibuku served by 31 full time staff and 60 expert clients.
TASO Mbale Center 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.
Monday, Wednesday, Friday - Community outreach activities. Such as ART refills, Viral Load bleeding, follow up of missed appointments and non- suppressors, HIV Testing Services, psychosocial support at homes and Community Drug Distribution Points
Tuesdays and Thursdays - Centre general clinic days in which integrated services offered are such as psychosocial support, HIV Testing Services, Antiretroviral drug refills, Tuberculosis screening, testing for malaria, e-MTCT/EID, Laboratory, Family Planning services and Nutrition assessment counseling and support.
It has also been involved in a number of research studies and collaborations such as;
Safer conception, drug resistance.
The Center is headed by a Center Programme Manager who is supported by four (04) heads of departments which include Psychosocial, medical, Finance and monitoring and Evaluation.
The Center has a Center Advisory Committee (CAC) made up of nine (09) 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 thirteen (13) 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-E Mechanism.
- Training fees
- Renting of office space
- Membership drive
- Student Interns (local fundraising)
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.
Mr. Charles Odoi
Center Programme Manager
Mobile:+256 752 774 137