VHU Games and Sports Youth Program
In its effort to launch projects that provide the youth with opportunities for experiential learning, VHU has initiated several games and sports initiatives to empower youth. Sport and recreation activities are valued as social connectors and powerful development tools to counter a lack of adequate opportunities for positive social interaction, unequal distribution of resources, a high rate of unemployment, a high rate of crime and other social ills. Youth sport and recreation networks are an important source and means for social networking, helping to combat exclusion and for fostering youth capacity to work collectively towards the realization of opportunities and addressing the challenges faced by young people.We currently run soccer and netball programs and we also run several campaigns through sports (e.g, Zip Up, Kick Malaria Out).
Zip Up Campaign:(HIV Awareness Football Tour)
Every year VHU will carries out HIV/AIDS Football Awareness project – which is organized in partnership with various organizations and stakeholders. A team of 5-10 intrepid international and local volunteers sets off on a one month HIV/AIDS awareness football tour. Over the course of the one month, the project team takes part in several HIV awareness events and plays many games and also gets involved in several activities aimed at spreading the message of prevention of HIV/AIDS through our campaign- “Zip-Up!”
Each event is carried out in collaboration with an established local community based organization, ensuring that the event is geared for the specific needs of the local community. The events vary enormously in terms of size and style, with venues ranging from organized local stadium to dirt pitches with no proper goals or markings. As well as taking part in football matches, the team also take part in HIV awareness seminars and workshops, street parades, cultural evenings and schools visits – all designed to increase people’s awareness and understanding of HIV and AIDS and to challenge people to take positive steps to protect themselves against the disease.
The project team also distributes leaflets and posters and other materials to help raise AIDS awareness, and also a huge amount of sports equipment – hoping to help local partners to continue to run similar events in the future, and encouraging the local community to take part in the activities.
At the end of the project, the team returns to Mukono weary and exhausted, but also filled with a considerable sense of achievement. The last week of the month is usually left for international volunteers to take a tour or take safari to other parts of the country and they will be getting ready to go back home. Over the course of the events, the volunteers win a huge number of friends, and are be able to convey vital messages to more than 10,000 people. In 2010 and 2012 we had very successful campaigns; to support this campaign this year 2014 please contact us and help us raise the required funds of USD$3500 for this year’s campaign.
Kick Malaria Campaign (Malaria Kicks)
In Uganda 70,000-110,000 people die of malaria every year. It has been calculated that in Uganda, malaria kills 350 children every day, the majority of which are children under the age of five; a death toll that far exceeds that of HIV/AIDS. Uganda is on third spot in a list of countries worst affected by Malaria in Africa. 90% of Uganda’s 29.4 million people are at risk to be infected with malaria. The disease is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality, and accounts for 25-40% of outpatient visits, 15-20% of all hospital admissions and 9-14% of all hospital deaths. Malaria also has negative economic effects, reducing the number of days a person can work by seven days per episode of malaria. Furthermore, malaria-related expenditure is estimated to account for 34% of total expenditure for the poorest in society.
VHU has created an annual month-long, volunteer driven awareness campaign to help reduce malaria. This campaign is known as the Kick Malaria Out. The campaign aims to raise awareness on:the rate at which malaria is killing the Uganda’s population, especially children and pregnant women; and Measures to prevent and eradicate, if not minimize, malaria within the community, with a special emphasis on educating the population on the need to avoid creating breeding grounds for mosquitoes.In this campaign we use several sports platforms (Marathon, Basketball, Netball, Volleyball, Football, Kick boxing, Taekwondo etc) to send our message out to the public. As part of the campaign, our volunteers: Conduct community workshops on malaria and provide information and educational material on the spread of malaria and preventative measures to avoid infection; and Conduct ‘clean-up’ training exercises which are designed to show communities how to prevent and clear water stagnation, a key breeding ground for mosquitoes.