#Ensonga Campaign: UYAHF Reaches Over 5,000 People at the Kampala City Festival 2016

Kampala city festival is an annual event that is celebrated every first Sunday of October every year. The festival celebrates different cultures, food and talents that we have in our country. This year's festival climaxed on Sunday 2nd October 2016. This festival brought together over 500,000 people, these were mainly traders/businessmen and businesswomen, different corporate companies like banks, insurance companies, the government ministries of tourism and internal affairs, the parliament of the Republic of Uganda and civil society organizations not forgetting the young people both in and out school who actually formed the biggest crowd and other Kampala dwellers.

We, Uganda youth and Adolescents Health forum (UYAHF) participated in the carnival, where young people are then we must be and together with our greatest partners Public Health Ambassadors Uganda. We had our stall at the parliamentary avenue just close to former Nandos restaurant. I’m sure you already know what gospel we were preaching. what more If not “Ensonga” campaign where we had our teams clad in black T-shirts branded “Ensonga” and the harsh-tag #MenstruationMatters as they passionately exhibited menstruation management products  like menstrual cups, disposable pads, re-usable  pads, tampons among others. They also gave out accurate information, demystified the myths around menstruation and gave tips on how best to manage those very painful cramps that people knew little about.

The “Ensonga” campaign project seeks to improve Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) among school going adolescent girls through improved access to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) facilities within primary and secondary schools. This was clearly demonstrated through the advocacy message placards.

All these happened alongside, provision of other adolescent youth friendly services like condom demonstration and distribution. Young people were educated on correct and consistent use of male and female condoms with dildos with some of our team clad in white T-shirts with words “Tuluwamu Nawe” which is translated as “we are with you”, aimed at breaking the HIV related stigma and discrimination among young people infected and affected with HIV/AIDS. Over 28,800 condoms, 5000 copies of IEC materials on body changes, STI management, Teenage Pregnancy, HIV related stigma, Puberty and Menstruation were distributed during the festival.

Our stall attracted more than 5,000 people, these included young people, middle aged males and females and the old who continuously crowded the stall.

We also had edutainment with our youthful Dj Julio. Our “Ensonga” team had their challengers touch their mouths in shock and amusement as they discovered “Ensonga” team were better performers too. This made the stall heated up as the crowd cheered and clapped with some putting on their dancing shoes too.

The carnival that went on till late was simply a big success and young people were continuously cautioned by our team to enjoy responsibly by using condoms that were freely given to them by our team.

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