The residents of the villages, which sit on the edge of Lake Kyoga, regularly participate in reckless, immoral behavior. This has given these communities two of the highest HIV rates in Uganda.
PAG Kaberamaido, with a small, 1-year grant from World Renew’s HIV innovation fund, is working with 198 community members, both male and female, ages 18-40 years, to reduce the high rate of new HIV infections in their communities. The PAG, using the Stepping Stones curriculum, is promoting faithfulness to one sexual partner and abstinence from sex until marriage.
By using the Stepping Stones approach and meeting every week, a lot of change is now being realized in many families in these two communities.
Mr. Samuel Ogoe is a 43-year-old fisherman from Apai village. He is married to Santa, age 30, and they are blessed with four young children.
Before he participated in the PAG Stepping Stones training in Apai, Mr Ogoe Samuel says he was an alcoholic who stayed out drinking until late at night. He often failed to provide an adequate income to support his family as a fisherman, and the little money he did earn was wasted on alcohol and adultery with other women in the village.
‘’An older woman seduced me and coerced me to abandon my wife,’’ Mr. Ogoe said. “I even encouraged my wife to also get another man, not knowing that it put us both at the risk of contracting HIV. There was no love between me and my wife. I used to beat her regularly.”
Samuel's wife, Santa, said that her husband’s drinking and adultery was painful and she was tempted to be unfaithful. “When my husband began attending Stepping Stones training, he became a changed man,” Santa said. “He is drinking less, comes home early, provides for the family, and left those other women. We enjoy our marriage now. “Santa added that she is thankful that she is no longer tempted to be unfaithful to her husband because of the improvements the training has brought about in their relationship. “I am full of joy and happiness because of the changes I see in my husband.”
But these improvements are not enough for Samuel: he still desires more change in his life. “I feel good,” he says. The Stepping Stones teaching has improved our marital relationship, but I also want the PAG church members in my community to keep on praying for me so that I stop drinking completely.”
World Renew and PAG help build strong families that are part of the foundation of sustainable transformation in communities. Samuel and Santa are grateful that they avoided contracting HIV despite Samuel’s risky behavior. Now they are furthering their family’s transformation by learning to use their income well. They are joining with other families in their community to start a savings and loan association. World Renew and PAG Kaberamaido are planning to train group members in small business development and savings management skills.
Join with us in prayer
- Thank God for Benjamin, our second son, who did very well in national exams last year and has now started his secondary education.
- Pray for Milly and I, for our health and safety. Milly has had back pain for some time now.
- Pray for the work of World Renew Uganda, that God may continue to guide us as we serve communities to bring about positive change.
- For the resources needed for the work we are doing.
World Renew Uganda
Image above: Samuel and Santa Ogoe and their family