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Peace, 38, always wanted to support sick people ever since she was a little girl, when her mother, sparked her passion for helping sick people. As she grew up, Peace, treasured a time when she would achieve her dream. She works as a peer mother; lives to support mothers to deliver HIV negative children at Nakaseke Hospital, Luweero district.

But early in her support initiative at the hospital, Peace felt helpless when pregnant women came to access Antiretroviral Treatment (ART) services without their partners. Sometimes, the women would feel discouraged that their children would be infected with HIV. “Many women feared to disclose their HIV status to their partners. They preferred keeping it a secret and protect their marriages,” explains Peace. In 2012, The Elimination of Mother to Child transmission of HIV (eMTCT) program, funded by the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through Health Systems Strengthening project (HSS) led by Mildmay Uganda, was rolled out in nine Districts of central, Uganda. Through the program, 340 peer mothers at 85 health centers have been trained, mentored and facilitated to support mothers deliver HIV free newborns.

85 - No. of Health Centred Involvements

Through the on-job training and ongoing mentoring, peer mothers learned to encourage women and their partners to access free counseling and Testing for HIV at the facility. Peace is one of the peer mothers that have been empowered by Mildmay Uganda to support HIV positive mothers under the eMTCT program. She has seen over 300 mothers deliver HIV free children.

“We have changed lives. No child is born with HIV at this hospital”, says Peace, Mildmay Uganda’s trained and supported peer mother at Nakaseke hospital.

The peer mothers and fathers provide counseling, psychosocial support to HIV positive mothers and their spouses, facilitate family support groups and educate them on the positive living lifestyles that include how to prevent their new born babies from getting HIV. They support them to start income generating activities. For peace, doing this has been her joy and a life calling. About 700 mothers at the hospital have benefitted.

340 - No. of Peer mothers trained

Peace attributes this great success to men’s involvement in supporting their wives to seek for HIV services. “I have been able to bring men on board. Some men are very illusive. However, I counsel and follow them up until they accept and come to support their wives; I love my work because I feel I’m saving lives of young children,” Peace narrated.

700 - No. of HIV+ Mothers that have benefited

Mildmay Uganda engages the peer mothers and fathers to save lives and bring care nearer to the people under the health systems strengthening project. The center of excellence provides quality HIV/AIDS care, treatment, training and education. Since its establishment, Mildmay Uganda has been an important player in Uganda’s HIV response more especially specialized HIV and AIDS care, support and treatment. Mildmay Uganda is one of the beacon centers for paediatric HIV and AIDS care in Africa.

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