ACET has a threefold mission to:
- Influence the national response to the HIV/AIDs pandemic and to act as a catalyst for the development of appropriate responses to the pandemic across levels in the country and across society.
- Build the capacity of the Church and civil society organisations to sustain responses to HIV/AIDs at national and internationally.
- Provide psychosocial support to young people through life skills education.
The senior team consists of a core of highly capable people each of whom has significant years of service within ACET. David Kabiswa is the Director, Paul Kabunga, the Deputy Director and Programme Manager, Emma Sakira, Resource Provider Manager and Daudi Talima the Senior Trainer.
Love Africa Support for ACET
St James is funding a three year capacity building programme based on the concept of a “Centre of Good Practice” which touches three of Tearfund’s five niche areas, namely:
- Support Services for widows and orphans, including savings and loans associations and income generating activities
- Addressing stigma and discrimination through church and community mobilization
- Behaviour change among young people, including life-skills education, peer education and working with men.
Within the Centre of Good Practice are three main elements:
- Increasing the capacity of faith-based and other organisations to deliver training and provide appropriate resources – Train the Trainer.
- Increasing the capacity of faith-based organisations to develop and implement effective, aligned and harmonised responses to HIV/AIDs – direct training by ACET with other Christian organisations, schools etc.
- Engaging with faith-based organisations to influence national HIV/AIDs policy – Strategic input.
Progress to Date
Over the last two years St James has supported development and programmes in all three of these areas. Taking each area in turn the following has been achieved:
1. Train the Trainer
- A prospectus for all ACET’s training courses has been developed and used in its consultancy offering alongside the development of a marketing strategy to publicise ACET’s capabilities.
- Key training manuals have been revised and new products developed including a Christian manual for Life-skills Education.
- ACET has also developed the capacity of four of its own staff to deliver training alongside the senior trainers Daudi and Paul.
- A website to disseminate best practice is being developed and St James is committed to further help in this project building on the skills sharing work done in September 2009.
2, Direct Training
- ACET has conducted church and community mobilisation courses as well as life-skills education courses for about 600 young people including peer educators who have the capacity to reach many more thousands of young people.
- It has provided organisational support and technical training for over 120 churches including churches within CFE, e.g. it has trained 28 pastors to organise home-based care.
- Best practice projects have been identified in each of the three Tearfund niche areas. Some have been written up for the website for further dissemination e.g. the positive lifestyle and faith impact of the 25 Drinking Clubs at Mbale. ACET is one of the few organisations working in this difficult area of behaviour change in men. There is also a write up of Savings and Loans Association work which ACET is piloting in Northern Uganda.
- Training for Tearfund partners across Uganda on ‘Impact Mitigation of HIV among children’, plus programmes for Compassion International and Christian Aid.
3. Policy Contribution
- ACET is engaged in influencing policy at national level in Uganda with the Ministries of Health and Education.
- In June 2009 ACET was elected onto the Steering Group of CaRNaC – Children at Risk National Collaboration involving Christian organisations that are responding to the issues of children. Membership includes the African Evangelistic Enterprise, World Vision, Compassion International and the Scripture Union.
- ACET is also involved as a member of the Steering Committee for the SAVE Conference organised through the Friends of Canon Gideon Foundation in partnership with Christian Aid to focus on prevention of HIV and to keep this subject high on the national policy making agenda. ACET was responsible for leading the East Africa team to propose a framework to be used to address HIV issues in these countries.
ACET will continue to work in all three of these areas. It is responding to the changing face of the pandemic, particularly the spread of HIV infection in married couples, by developing materials for church leaders to talk about sex and sexuality within the context of marriage and by providing materials for churches to set up their own HIV programmes.
ACET also plans to help churches in and around Kampala adopt the PEP methodology which has been developed so effectively by PAG. In addition it will develop new training courses for use by teachers in schools and a course for 100 head teachers to help them roll out HIV programmes in their schools.
ACET will also engage with a KAB (Knowledge, Attitudes and Behaviours) survey with its own and Tearfund projects to measure improvements in people’s physical, material, emotional and spiritual well being. Best practice learning from these activities will be shared to ensure maximum strategic impact and links with research institutions are being developed to deepen understanding of emerging trends.
Further engagement in national policy making forums and with international faith based organisations is planned to ensure continuing strategic influence on the prevention of HIV/AIDS infection and the alleviation of its effects for those who have the disease.