AIDS in Uganda
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AIDS in Uganda

HIV is a serious health/social and economic problem affecting women, men, youth and children. An estimated 36 million people are infected with HIV/AIDS, and it has claimed 22 million people in the world since it was discovered.

The Sub-Saharan African region is the most affected region in the World with 28.8 million people infected. Uganda has been severely affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Since 1982 when the first AIDS case was diagnosed, HIV/AIDS has been spreading throughout the country. Currently, HIV/AIDS is responsible for 12% of annual deaths and is the leading cause of death among people aged 15-45 years. As a result, over 2 million children (15% of all children below 18 years) are orphaned.

Traditionally in many Ugandan communities, women are charged with the day-to-day childcare roles in households. This has resulted in increased workload for the women therefore impacting negatively on economic production since women account for 70-80% of the labour force involved in agricultural production, the leading sector of the Ugandan economy.

TAOST's programmes have been designed to relieve the suffering caused by AIDS and to prevent the further spread of the disease. The age group most affected by HIV/AIDS is the 15-45 years who are also the most economically viable and are the breadwinners in their homes. This has resulted finally into an enormous number of widows and orphans whose economic viabilities are limited or absent.

The orphans especially are endangered, if they cannot attend school to gain life support skills for their future and if there are no social support networks to ensure their survival, protection and upbringing. The increasing number of street children is a testimony to this. The country is in danger of losing out on a skilled workforce and the current trend in development may not be sustainable in the near future. Focusing on the challenges of HIV/AIDS and its impact especially on women and children are timely interventions.

The AIDS Orphans Support Trust
P. O. 498
Email: info@taostuganda.org

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Mercy, one of the widows supported by TAOST, with her family

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