Weaving is a method of textile production in which two distinct sets of yarns or threads are interlaced at right angles to form a product. The process of weaving or sewing pliable materials into three-dimensional artifacts, such as baskets, mats, mesh bags is what Baylor TASO-NFM3 programme is using to skill vulnerable young girls and women to get a second chance to better livelihood. But more importantly Baylor uses this skilling programme to spread the message against HIV/AIDS through counselling, testing and fighting stigma.
Arinaitwe Brenda 21, from Kisega West, is had dropped out the Primary Teacher’s college at Bulera. Even when her mother struggled to take her back to school she had little hope that she would get employed and continue to take care of her baby that she had given birth to, while at school. “My baby daddy tried to take care of us but he was also a student by then, he could only do so much and not enough. So, I resorted to manual labor and digging in people shambas to support my baby and perhaps school ” she says.
Chance came her way when the village youth chairman approached her to join a Baylor sponsored programme at the Innovation center that skills young girls and women to make baskets from recycled material. “I opted for Bakery instead but I later brought my friend Kyakusiima Fiona to learn Weaving. We will combine and do business together. I’m happy to be here” she says
Kyakusiima Fiona, 19 Standard 5 drop out praised her mom Ngonzi Christian that allowed her to join the baking. The single mother of two kids only practices subsistence farming to maintain her family livelihood. “I feel like my dad betrayed us by leaving my mom. I am going to work hard to reverse this. My baking skills will help me do just that!” she empathetically stresses.
“My dream to help my little sister attain school to the highest. And with the knowledge we have acquired ab out the dangers of HIV/AIDS, I ‘am all out to protect her” she adds
Fiona says her biggest challenge has been the stigma from the community where she was referred to as a failure after she dropped out of school due to pregnancy.
Baylor College of Medicine Children’s Foundation-Uganda (Baylor – Uganda) is an indigenous not for-profit child health and development organization. The New Funding Mechanism3 (NFM3) Cluster 1 Global Fund Grant as a Sub Recipient from TASO the Principal Recipient of the Global Fund for non-Public Sector for the period 2021 to 2023. The Project is to be implemented in 27 districts including