|AIDS Education Through Imams: A Spiritually Motivated Community Effort in Uganda (UNAIDS, 1998, 35 p.)|
|IMAU (Islamic Medical Association of Uganda)|
The misery and human suffering that AIDS brings is a serious concern for Muslim leaders. In September of 1989, IMAU took the lead in uniting the Muslim response to the AIDS epidemic by holding a National AIDS Education Workshop. This workshop, funded by the Ministry of Healths AIDS Control Programme and the World Health Organization, shaped the Muslim communitys role in responding to the AIDS epidemic.
The National Workshop boasted the attendance of every District Khadi in Uganda, as well as representatives from WHO, the Ministry of Health, and many Muslim health professionals. Perhaps the most important participant was His Eminence the Chief Khadi, who was prompted to declare a Jihad on AIDS. This declaration of support from the highest level of Ugandas Muslim community was a critical first step in mobilizing the Muslim community in the fight against AIDS.
Following the National Workshop, IMAU organized AIDS education workshops for Imams in several districts. Extensive dialogue between health professionals and religious leaders at these early workshops revealed the need to design an AIDS education project to reach Muslim families through educators trained with and sanctioned by Imams.