Following an initial pilot launched in July 2019, the None in Three Uganda team have been successful in securing funding from Makerere University to continue to develop the School Based Social Work project. The team have received UGX 154,300,000 ( approximately £34,288) from Makerere University to run a further project, complete with baseline and endline studies, through to June 2021.
Through this project, social work students at Makerere University are given additional training to enable them to provide counselling in schools to vulnerable and at risk pupils. The students provide support to pupils whose needs have been identified by teachers, by peers or through self-referral. The support offered includes counselling and guidance services. The social work students are also trained to educate pupils about a range of issues, such as children’s rights, reproductive health and proper sanitation. Where necessary, the volunteers are able to put children in contact with external agencies for further support.
The programme was launched in response to the findings of our qualitative research. Our survey of over 11,000 Ugandan school children revealed a high number of children with trauma-related issues and lack of appropriate support systems.
The project fulfils a vital need to ensure that support is available for vulnerable children. Since its initial launch, the service has been integrated into course requirements for social work students at Makerere University. The additional funding awarded follows a positive evaluation of the initial project. This new grant will extend the reach of the project and allow evidence to be collected on the clinical outcomes for children supported by this service.
The project is overseen by School Based Social Work Project Coordinator James Thomas Ssenfuuma, under the leadership of Uganda Country Director Dr Eric Ochen and Research Fellow Dr Esther Nanfuka Kalule.
13th October 2020