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The AIDS  Support Organisation (TASO)

Friday, 19 September 2014
     
TASO Silver Jubilee, 1987-2012. Celebrating 25 years of Positive Living: The Foundation of HIV Prevention, Care and Support
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TASO Jinja

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Background

TASO Jinja is located in Jinja Referral Hospital in Jinja District in Eastern region of Uganda on the northern shores of Lake Victoria and at the source of river Nile. It borders Kayunga and Kamuli districts to the North and Mayuge to the south East. The center catchment area has a population of about 1.5 Million people in five districts of Jinja, Kamuli, Iganga, Mayuge, and parts of Mukono Districts.

The center began on March 18, 1991 out of a local initiative by members of Jinja community because of the then growing concern of HIV/AIDS. The idea to establish the center was spearheaded by Dr. Erumuka Patrick who was involved in HIV/AIDS work at that time and was later joined by a few other people, including Mrs. Rose Anne Magezi who herself was nursing her HIV positive sister at that time.

TASO Jinja started its operations in the then private wing of Jinja Hospital (present day Grade A pharmacy) but later relocated to the former polio ward from where they operated until 2004 when the center moved to the newly constructed premises besides the old office block
 

Unique Projects

1. TASO Jinja with support from CDC has carried out a study seeking to describe HIV transmission risks of 1,086 HIV positive persons attending the TASO clinics in Jinja.
2. Currently TASO Jinja in partnership with MRC are conducting a research to establish the effectiveness and efficiency of ARVs delivery models (facility and Home Based models.
         * Through Health Facilities by clinically qualified staff.
         * Home-based care where lay workers i.e. non-medically qualified people, play a major role in the ART and VCT delivery.
3. The apprenticeship program has given Vocational skills to children to enable them help their sick parents and siblings. The children are trained in;
     * Carpentry
     * Tailoring
     * Saloon/Hair dressing
     * Mechanics (Meter)
4. Has provided seed grants to the community Volunteers to improve their welfare as a measure of sustainability.
5. There is provision of Home Based VCT to the clients and immediate family members. This has facilitated disclosure among partners.
6. There is also provision of free ARVs to about 2000 clients and their immediate family members. Majority of the clients are responding positively.
7. Home Based Care is being carried out in the community by trained Volunteer Community Nurses identified within the community. This strategy covers up the gap of medical workers at grassroots.

Awareness and sensitization

* Workshops/Seminars have been carried out together with key leaders in the district.
* TASO Jinja has trained high risk groups as Peer Educators for instance commercial sex workers, boda boda cyclists, traditional birth attendants Taxi-Operators.
* Sensitization is carried out to people at places of work, schools and institutions.
* TASO Jinja has a Drama group, which carries out the awareness and sensitization through music, dance and drama.

Developed capacity for HIV/AIDS care and prevention

* The Center has a team of well trained Counselors, Medical personnel, Field officers, Social workers and Operational support staff who complement each other to provide quality services to the clients.
* Trained volunteers at community grass root level conduct AIDS educations, home care, counseling and referrals in communities.
* PLWAs have been trained in;
      o Income generating activities and Sustainable Livelihoods Programming (SLP).
      o Memory book writing
      o Child rights
      o Child counseling
      o Tailoring
      o Family members have been trained as care givers

Challenges to service delivery
 Big Numbers: There is overwhelming demand for the services with an average of 250 clients per clinic day

Poverty: Clients need to be economically empowered to sustain themselves to avoid dependence. TASO is working towards this through the economic empowerment strategy.

Sustainability Sustaining community AIDS programs is a challenge especially where local leaders' participation is low.
Staffing

Category of Staff Total Employed
Advocacy Collaboration 02
Counsellors 20
Community Trainers 01
Medical Officers 05
Clinical Officers 02
Pharmacy Technicians 02
Laboratory Technicians 03
Nurses 06
Operations and Human Resorces staff 12
Projects 03
Field Officers 11
Volunteers 08
Part-timers 11
Day center 01
Total 87
Partnership and collaboration

 * TASO Jinja operates a joint ART clinic with the Hospital where by TASO has seconded trained HIV/AIDS counselors to the Hospital.
 * Bed ridden clients are hospitalized in Jinja Hospital and closely monitored by Hospital and TASO staff.
 * TASO Jinja operates outreach clinics, which offer counseling, medical treatment, and food support at identified Government health units.
 * Volunteers and community Nurses have subscribed to the TASO mission and values.
 * To date TASO Jinja has a membership of close to 900.
 * TASO Jinja has partnered with JIDECO in extending Sustainable Livelihoods training to its (TASO's)clients

Contact Person
 
Mr. Kimera Mutebi Boogere
Centre Manager, TASO Jinja
Jinja Hospital
P.O. Box 577 Jinja;
Phone 033-2260117
Mobile 256-752 774 147
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
TASO Jinja Briefs and Reports