I am in Kampala at the moment, for some business and rest. Yesterday, while working on the last lines of my report for 2012, I was called almost every five minutes by someone whose Ugandan number I didn’t recognize and when I answered nobody was there. The whole day this continued. And I usually don’t call numbers back that I don’t know. Finally I had enough of it. I sent a text message saying: Identify yourself or stop calling. Okay, I was called again, same manner, no answer when I took the call. Grrr. But then a message arrived. Identifying himself as Likambo. Ooooh. One of my colleagues. And he wants to talk with me about the training of the National AIDS Program that has to take place before Adi Hospital can start giving ARV treatment to people with AIDS. I tried to call back, both this number and his Congo number, but no answer.
Finally this morning I got a hold of him. He mentioned that he had talked with Myriam, director of CIELS, a NGO in Ingbokolo involved in VCT. They were going for talks with their donors this week, and also wanted to talk about organizing this training in Ariwara, 40km south of Ingbokolo. Were we interested in participating and sharing the costs, so that the training would be organized in Ariwara and in Adi??? YES!!! This means that the costs for travel of the facilitators will be shared, and some other small costs which will probably cut the costs in half. We already received the budget from the National AIDS Program and that came to $27.200 (about), so our costs will probably be around $15.000 and we still need donors for this money. Please??? If you know where to enter this request for funds, please let me know. It is really necessary for Adi Hospital to be able to organize a treatment program with ARV, PMTCT and VCT because the conditions of travel are worsening and more people are known to be infected.
And by the way, just after finishing the call with Likambo, Myriam called me with the same question, do we want to share the costs and organize it together? i gave her an affirmative answer as well. So, this story will be followed up with updates.
Here is one testimony of a friend who is HIV positive and goes to Arua for treatment with ARV.
Malisi says: I have to go to Arua every month for treatment. It is that often because I have a daughter of one year old now. In rainy season the trip can take up to 6-7 hours (for about 80 km) because of the bad road conditions. Sometimes we have to stay on the veranda of the parking to wait for an occasion to return to Congo. The costs are high. First for the transport to Arua and back, immigration, accommodation, meals in Arua. My daughter cries a lot while traveling. I wish, and with me many other persons who live with the HIV virus, that our treatment can be organized in Adi.