A lot has happened……

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Sarah Komugisha – Medical Services Manager & Board Member (Founders Representative)

Hello Friends,

Warm greetings from Kawempe Home Care. Uganda is just recovering from a devastating Covid19 second wave. Other countries are also experiencing new waves as the Delta strain has proven to be more contagious.

We lost many friends, loved ones with many others hospitalised during the peak months of June and July 2021. Thankfully the 42-day lockdown helped slow down the spread of the virus and positivity rate is down to 4.2%.

It is important we continue to be there for our patients

Our medical team has under very trying conditions been able to continue to provide medical support to existing and new patients. The pandemic has bought many challenges but we are proud of the results we have achieved particularly the good results with the suppression rates.

Achieving and maintaining viral suppression is essential both for individual health and to reduce HIV transmission within the community.

Outcomes:

For the period up to September 2021 we have:

  • Provided 2,300 patients with PHDP services (Family Planning; STI screening; cervical cancer screening, access and adherence support).
  • 1177 people tested for HIV with 4.7% testing positive and on treatment.
  • 2,604 patients on ART treatment.

During the period April-June 2021 the following support was provided.

  • Community HIV Testing Counselling (HTC) – 285
  • Facility HTC -199
  • Community HIV Testing Screening (HTS) -258
  • Gender Based Violence (GBS) – 41 cases (33 females, 9 males)

Challenges:

  • One of the key challenges has been with transport as the cost of fuel has sky rocketed and patients are unable to come to the facility for appointments and collect medication. Fortunately, our patients still adhered to treatment and our wonderful community volunteers and staff mobilised using any transport means available, to deliver medication to the patients.
  • Shortage of some ART (Antiretroviral Therapy) drugs, however we were able to ensure continued treatment for patients on these drugs.
  • Covid19 vaccine for staff difficult to access because of supply issues.
  • Lack of food support for patients suffering malnutrition.

Other Achievements:

  • Constant follow up for new clients identified as HIV positive has helped us to achieve 100% linkage.
  • Appointment of a new palliative care nurse to work in the hostel for day duties and in the community for cancer patients.
  • We have kept the clinic running smoothly as well as the community activities despite the lockdown and transport challenges.

It takes dedication, and team work to continue to deliver services in such difficult circumstances. Thank you to the medical team, community volunteers and for the continued support from Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI).

Happy 5th Anniversary New Hope Children’s Hostel

Thanks to our supporters, 639 children and their caregivers have received accommodation, food and transport so that they can access specialised care at the Uganda Cancer Institute. This treatment can be between 3 – 6 months’ periods.

We are extremely grateful to the initial funders Kindern Eine Chance for the first three years operational support, then the American Cancer Society for two years and currently a wonderful supporter Ceri from the USA, through Friends of Reach Out (USA).  We also thank our colleagues at the Uganda Cancer Institute for entrusting us with the responsibility of caring for these very  vulnerable children who have  cancer.

Local supporters Price Love have been a major supporter of the hostel

 We could not keep our doors open if it wasn’t for the support of our many friends around the world, local partners and friends of the hostel supporters club.

 During the past few months our US Hospice  and palliative care partner – Samaritan,  mobilized their staff, friends and family to raise funds for bulk purchases of food for the children and their caregivers during the Covid19 second wave lockdown.

We are very thankful for all the support which has enabled us to continue to help these families.

Why exercise is more important than ever….

It has been shown that exercise can support our immune system and exercise has been proven to support our mental health. For the older adults and individuals managing chronic medical conditions regular walks are a great option.  For children and adolescents moderate to vigorous physical activity each day, this does not include playing games on the computer!  are associated with elevations in self-esteem, improved concentration, reduction in depressive symptoms and improvement in sleep.  Remember “If you don’t use it, you lose it.” 

What a great example our staff at KHC are setting.

Recently 10 staff joined the Uganda Rotary Fraternity in their 10th Rotary Cancer Run. This annual event raises much needed funds for cancer programs. The money raised at this event will go to construction of Radiotherapy Bunkers at Nsambya hospital in Kampala.

“I entered the event as I know how important it is to support people with cancer as our organisation does a lot with children who have cancer. I did train for the event with daily  workouts on my tread mill, skipping and walking. There were different activities and it was fun being a member of the KHC team.” Immaculate Mary (HR & Administration Manager)

This year’s 3rd Uganda Conference on Cancer and Palliative Care on 23-24 September, will be a little different as due to Covid19 it will be a virtual conference.

The conference will focus on ‘Providing care to the vulnerable children with cancer during the response to Covid19 and other challenging situations.’ 

New Hope Children’s Hostel Operations Manager Claire Namulwa will be presenting and share the importance of not only providing children with cancer in our care, access to treatment but also the need to provide psychosocial support.

Cancer does not discriminate……

 

However, access to treatment for children with cancer from poor rural communities does, as the families often cannot afford the accommodation, transport and food during the child’s treatment.

 

Join Our Campaign with GlobalGiving  to provide more children with cancer access to treatment so they too can have a future.

From September 13-17 (ends 11:59:59 EDT), if you donate up to US$50 you will help children with cancer from disadvantaged rural communities to access treatment. And GlobalGiving will match your generosity at 50% for the #LittleByLittle campaign. 

Help us spread the word: share on social media with your family and friends to let them know that BIG change can come from little acts of kindness! To donate go to:

Help Poor Children with Cancer to Access Treatment – GlobalGiving

 Let us give these children a fighting chance to beat this terrible illness.

This is why we are so passionate about helping children with cancer …….

You may have seen recently on our social media posts the story about Muhamed. It demonstrates why we need to support these young people during probably the fight of their lives and when their childhood has been so savagely disrupted.

This is a good news story about a fight that Muhamed is winning.

Muhamed is 18 years old and recently he achieved in his final A level studies, 3 A’s, a distinction two in general paper and ICT. This achievement ranked him as one of the top students in Uganda. What is even more incredible is that this young man has been fighting cancer since he was in Primary 6, and was undergoing treatment during this time. 

‘I have 7 brothers and 6 sisters. I first noticed pain in my right ankle in 2013, which I managed with painkillers. I sought medical care due to the pain and swelling and it continued to get worse so I finally went into hospital. My mother sold charcoal in order for me to get further treatment and also borrowed some money from friends to meet the costs of staying at the hospital. A biopsy was taken and it confirmed I had liposarcoma cancer.’

Muhamed’s treatment was unsuccessful and in 2021 he was referred to the  Uganda Cancer Institute (UCI). He arrived with some books and clothes and the first night he slept on the verandah and the next day he was referred to New Hope Children’s Hostel.

My mother stayed with me at the hostel during my chemotherapy. I was able to study for my exams in the nurses’ room. Once I had a great improvement in my leg my mother requested to go home as she was the bread winner and needed to care for my siblings.

I am very grateful for all the support I have been given not only the New Hope hostel also my school and the staff. I am still having chemotherapy treatment but I have a dream of pursing a degree in telecommunication engineering. There are still challenges ahead but I am grateful that I now have a future.’

Friendly, Accessible, Timely and Professional Covid19 Testing.

Many people want to be able to access promptly Covid19 testing and get their results the same day.

Our medical facility provides this service. It is simple if you reside in Kampala and want to have a test just contact us and book an appointment. KHC is a ‘World Health Organization Approved Facility’ for Covid19 testing.

 

Until next time, stay safe.

 

2 thoughts on “A lot has happened……”

  1. Dear Team at Kawempe Home Care Team, Thank you for all your fabulous work – particularly at the Children’s Hostel which I am very happy to help support. You are changing people’s lives and it is appreciated.
    With good wishes, Ceri

    Reply
  2. Shalom,
    Thank you so much for the great work you’re doing for our children in Kawempe Home,i pray that the good Lord continue to use to be a blessing to these little angels.
    I just want to make a little inquiry, if someone wants to make a small contribution in kind, what are some of the items that can benefit the children? Please let me know and then i see how i can be of some help to this beautiful heaven on earth for these children.

    Reply

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