Thursday, September 27, 2018

The Cheerfulness of Ituba B

  by The Ituba B Village Intern Team: Shafic, Sarah, Ellis, Annliz, Suzie, and Shaby

The celebratory crowd
\arriving at the health center.
We heard the large crowd of community members before we saw them. There were dozens of people waving branches, playing the drums, and singing along the way. Curious, one of our team members followed the crowd down the road. Turns out, it was a celebration for the registration of a candidate for the Chairman position in the village. Once the village members arrived to their final location (the health center), the candidate sat down and began his registration paperwork. The community celebrated up until the candidate finished his registration. It was interesting to see so much celebration, dancing, and excitement for the registration of a candidate.

From this celebration, we understood how much the village values happiness and excitement. But the cheerfulness doesn’t end with special events.

Next door, there are a set of twins, a girl and boy about five years old, called Babirye and Waiswa who never fail to come and say hello to us. They cannot stop smiling at the sight of us and always invite us to join them in their current game. Their mother, the wife of one of our VHTs, gave us some recently harvested beans from their garden as a thank you for helping her to construct a tippy tap. She was so excited and grateful; we felt the impact of our work deeply. As the days go by, the hospitality of the people just keeps getting better and better.

Upon our arrival to Ituba B, we were happy to be in a team so we had others to experience similar feelings with, but soon enough, the warm welcome from the community calmed our fears. The small trading center, which contains a few salons, kiosks, and rolex (chapatti and fried eggs) stands, are always present with dozens of people, who continuously smile and wave at us. There is no shortage of cheerfulness in Ituba B!

The Influence of Others

by Tumusiime Loy, Reproductive Health Program Coordinator

Mariam has not always been comfortable telling people her story. She wasn’t always comfortable attending outreaches in her home village of Irenzi. The negative attitudes and stories from her fellow community members discouraged her from seeking contraceptives. It even made her scared to discuss the topic with her husband.

As parents of three children, Mariam and her husband are utilizing UVP services to space their children. “We are planning to have another child after five years,” she says. She elaborates further that the space between children allows her to stay healthy, and when she remains healthy, she can more easily provide for her family.

Mariam manages a small business and the family farm. While it is on a small scale, it provides well for her small family. She notes that because she and her husband can better care for a small family, they spend less money caring for sick children. The benefits are very obvious to Mariam. So obvious that she has begun to encourage other women to attend UVP outreaches to learn about the benefits of a small family.