|AIDS Education Through Imams: A Spiritually Motivated Community Effort in Uganda (UNAIDS, 1998, 35 p.)|
AIDS Education Through Imams arose out of the need to increase awareness of HIV/AIDS prevention and control messages in our communities. This was not an easy task because of the social and cultural diversity in our communities. Different groups tend to receive and perceive these messages differently. Moreover, dissemination of AIDS information remained largely inadequate and often inaccurate. This gap needed to be filled.
IMAU was therefore received with enthusiasm in the struggle to implement government strategy of the Multi-Sectoral AIDS Control Approach (MACA). Government adopted this strategy when it realized that AIDS was no longer a health issue alone but had social, cultural, and economic aspects that needed the collective effort of other institutions and sectors. The high level of HIV/AIDS awareness and declining levels of infection we see today are the direct results of the commitment of individuals and institutions who chose to confront the epidemic head on.
IMAU has succeeded in integrating Islamic religious values and wisdom with scientific medical information on HIV/AIDS. As a result of its excellent work, IMAU has been chosen by UNAIDS for documentation as a shining example of best practice. This is a great honour to IMAU, the Islamic community, and Uganda.
I wish to thank all those people who are participating in the IMAU. I salute all those who died in the struggle and call on everyone to continue fighting with new determination. Finally, I extend our deep appreciation to our partners and donors who have continued to support us throughout this struggle, until the Jihad is won.
Uganda AIDS Commission