Action Africa Help (AAH) Uganda is a local Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) that began operations in West Nile in 1993 extending emergency care to more than 80,000 refugees who fled fighting in South Sudan. Since then we have delivered services in five refugee settlements which gradually evolved into a comprehensive, integrated, multi-sectoral programme that works in partnership with United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), local government and other development partners. Our portfolio includes providing essential services – health, education, water, sanitation and hygiene – and extends to community services, agriculture, environmental management and protection, and logistical support for humanitarian services. Promoting gender equality, and improving livelihoods and food security underpins all our programming. We work in Moyo/Adjumani, Kampala, Kiryandongo and Kyangwali
Since 2000, AAH Uganda, in partnership with UNHCR and the Officer of the Prime Minister (OPM), has operated Kyangwali refugee settlement in Hoima District, mid-western Uganda. AAH Uganda implements a multisectoral assistance programme for refugees in Kyangwali and Kiryandongo refugee settlements in Western Uganda under a partnership agreement with UNHCR and Office of the Prime Minister. Key areas of intervention include: – water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), health, community services, education and environment. The AAH Uganda approach ensures all interventions take into account key cross-cutting issues of HIV/AIDS, gender equality and equity, age, disability and population and family health. In Kyangwali, AAH Uganda’s areas of operation focus on WASH, primary health care, environment, gender-based violence, child protection, support to persons with special needs, community mobilisation and education. In Kiryandongo, in partnership with UNHCR and UNICEF, AAH Uganda is implementing activities in the areas of child protection, support to people with special needs, gender-based violence, environment, and community mobilisation.
AAH Uganda and our partners has been helping people whose lives and livelihoods were shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover, and gain control of their future with emergency humanitarian aid including providing logistical support for people fleeing violence in South Sudan. Our involvement also includes delivery of services such as primary health care, education and WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene). We pride ourselves in the delivery of quality health care; to date we have supported 98% of pregnant women within our reach with quality health care services including delivery by skilled personnel. This has significantly reduced the death rates among children under five. Other services that have been rendered include post-test counselling and testing in EMTCT (Elimination of Mother to Child Transmission) reaching 1,138 women. We have also provided more schooling and educational opportunities to 5,431 girls and boys thus increasing the school registration rate to more than 51%. Additionally, we have delivered safe drinking water, water management training and sanitation to people so as to improve the quality of life. Currently, we have made available 31.8 litres ofwater to a person per day. Our efforts in environment conservation has seen the production of 105,096 seedlings while 1,032 PoCs (Persons of Concern) have been trained in briquette making. Our community services segment has also offered shelter support to the elderly. To date, 34 PoCs have received shelter support. Furthermore, we have rendered a wide array of services to the SGBV (Sexual and Gender Based Violence) survivors; these include medical assistance, provision of safe spaces and counselling. So far we have supported 30 SGBV survivors with medical assistance, seven have been relocated to a safe space while 282 have received legal assistance.
AAH Uganda has been contracted by World Food Programme (WFP) to store and distribute food (cereals, pulses and cooking oil) to refugees in settlements.
Food is distributed according to WFP procedures which includes ensuring that new refugees and people with special needs (the elderly, orphans and people with disabilities) receive the greatest food support.
Achievements as of September 2015
Monthly Food Basket Monitoring (FBM) targeting a sample of 30 homes per locations were done. Issues identified during food basket monitoring exercises have been addressed so as to increase efficiency and effectiveness at food distribution points. For instance, latrines and hand washing services have been provided; construction of food distribution sheds is underway. As a result of the supplementary feeding program (SFP) severe malnutrition in the coverage area has reduced from 55% in December 2013 to 52.5% in June 2015.
Conflict in South Sudan caused an influx of more than 110,000 refugees into West Nile in far Northern Uganda in 2014. AAH Uganda plays a crucial support role for UNHCR and other partners by maintaining a fleet of more than 90 trucks, light vehicles and motorbikes, as well as 20 generators at our workshop in Adjumani. During the emergency, UNHCR and partners were overwhelmed by the huge number of people arriving daily so AAH Uganda stepped up to help relocate more than 90,000 newly arrived refugees from border points to the reception centre and later to the various settlements in Adjumani, Arua and Koboko. Our trucks also transported core relief items including the firewood used to prepare much needed hot meals at reception centres and some 6,000 litres of water in the early days of the emergency, before other partners took over.
From 2011-2014, AAH Uganda ran a livelihoods and food security project funded by the European Union which targeted 126,000 Ugandan nationals and 23,359 refugees in Kyangwali and Kiryandongo, Western Uganda. We designed the project to improve food security and household incomes through better farming and business practices. The project continues to have wide-ranging benefits for the target population. AAH Uganda is a country programme of Action Africa Help International (AAH-I), an African-led, not-for-profit humanitarian and development agency based in Nairobi, Kenya that supports livelihood-challenged communities to sustainably improve their well-being and standard of living. With other country programmes in South Sudan, Zambia, Somalia and Kenya, AAH-I has more than 20 years’ experience working with communities in conflict and post-conflict situations, including refugees, internally displaced people and host communities.
The project was designed to promote adoption and scaling up of production of the high-yielding NERICA technology with the long-term goal to increase food productivity and therefore food security and household income in chronically food insecure communities.
Among the activities funded by the project AAH Uganda: