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Using Obuntubulamu to Curb Teenage Pregnancies and Early Marriages during the Lockdown

It is your responsibility to keep yourselves safe and in case of anything, reach out to the responsible authorities without fear 

– Justine Nakayenga Programme Manager, World Vision Butambala

Butambala district like many districts in Uganda is grappling with the problem of violence against children. Most highlighted among these is teenage pregnancies and early marriages.

To this end, The Nnabagereka Development Foundation in partnership with World Vision, Budde and Kalamba cluster held a Ekisaakaate kya Nnabagereka sexual reproductive and psychological counselling camp in Butambala from 27th to 30th July.

The camps were held in eight villages; Kibugga, Kikunyu, Kawami, Lwere, Magatto, Kamugobwa, Seeta and Lukalu with approximately 50 children trained in each village.

NDF’s Foundation Manager, Andrew Adrian Mukiibi during an interview said the camp was timely, because children were the first people affected by the lockdown as they had to return home with nothing much to do which has exposed them to many dangers.

Participants noted that with no school to go to, they resorted to odd jobs such as harvesting khat (mayirungi). It is also reported that many young girls are falling prey to sexual predators that offer them Rolexes or money as little as UGX 10,000.

Prior to the lock down, children noted that they were molested by health practitioners at the local health centres where they were often taken for medical examination, something that the World Vision partners promised to follow up with after the camp.

World Vision Butambala’s Programme Manager, Justine Nakayenga during the camp called upon the children to always report such cases to the local authorities;

“It is your responsibility to keep yourselves safe and in case of anything, reach out to the responsible authorities without fear” said Nakayenga.

Participants explain how they understand the values of Obuntubulamu

Participants were also urged to find something creative to occupy them and help out at home because as it is, an idle mind is the devil’s workshop.

The Foundation was also able to identify peer mentors who are supposed to spread the Obuntubulamu message of morality, civic engagement, integrity, civility to their peers who weren’t able to make it for the camp.

The team is also set to carry out a Parents camp on the 25th August to equip them with how best to engage their children during these times rather than marrying them off or letting them go astray.