Western Uganda Bantwana Program (WUBP)
In Western Uganda, numerous issues threaten the well-being of children and adolescents. These include: the ongoing conflict in border-country Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), high incidence of forced marriage for girls, harmful labor practices, high drop-out rates in high school, and child abuse. Without proper nutrition, health care, education, psychosocial support, and legal protection, these children are unlikely to develop into healthy, productive adults.
Since 2008, WUBP has built the capacity of nine community-based partners in the four underserved districts of Kyenjojo, Kasese, Kabarole, and Kyegegwa to provide an integrated package of child protection, livelihoods, and psychosocial support (PSS).
WUBP equips children with the knowledge and tools they need to protect themselves from abuse and neglect. It also mobilizes schools, communities, government officials, and others responsible for protecting children to act on their behalf. The program equips community volunteers with skills to help families address critical needs, and it also supports families to expand their assets through a range of economic interventions. WUBP’s integrated approach helps children and families gain skills and link to critical services so they can improve their well-being. Evidence from a range of case studies and evaluations reinforces the efficacy of Bantwana’s approach.
Read more about WUBP:
“Two Wrongs Don’t Make a Right” A Hang up the Stick Documentary:
This short documentary highlights WUBP-supported schools actively championing the “Hang up the Stick” campaign and features positive change among teachers who have taken up alternative forms of discipline in schools. Bantwana engaged documentary filmmakers from NTV, a Ugandan national television channel, to develop “Two Wrongs Don’t Make a Right.” The piece aired on national television in July 2016 and featured perspectives of both children and teachers, exposing the contradictions and commonly held beliefs about the value of caning for discipline and the actual consequences and negative psychological effects of caning on children. WUBP capitalized on excitement and momentum generated by the documentary in WUBP districts to engage district officials to work more closely with schools. NTV also carried out a Facebook campaign (#hangupthestick) on the issue which generated rich discussion on social media by more than 200 Ugandan men, women and children. WUBP has shared the documentary with national and district stakeholders, schools and implementing partners and plans to share with caregivers and communities to facilitate deeper discussion and reflection around the impact of physical violence against children and shift social norms.