My weekly duties vary because a lot of my project is independent work. I follow a timeline for when I need to turn particular deliverables and check in with my preceptors. But for the most part my day starts around 8:30-9:00am everyday and usually I will begin doing independent research for my projects and some days I spend the whole day working on my projects. Other days I go and visit field sites such as the main and mini rabbit breeding centers, the nutrition clinic, and the maternal clinic. I also participate in community outreach such as the monthly HIV and cervical cancer screening outreach. I also attend the deliveries at the maternal clinic and that can be anytime of day because babies do not like to be born during normal business hours. I also do some weekend activities such as the last Saturday of the month when the nutrition clinic does their check in with mothers and children that they have rehabilitated. So while I do spend a decent amount of time doing research and organizing things for my projects I get to spend a lot time in the communities and interacting with families and patients who actually receive KIHEFO’s services.
I am currently located in Kabale, Uganda, which is in the southwestern region of Uganda and about seven hours outside the capital city of Kampala. Kabale is a mostly rural area with a main town center, which is where I am staying. About 80% of the population does some form of subsistent farming and women and children usually do the farming itself. Hence, a majority of the people’s diets are starch based such as sweet potatoes and corn. The roads are actually pretty well paved, which according to everyone here is a big difference from about three years when it was mostly just dirt roads. The old roads created huge issues with the amount of dust that would travel through the air and cause breathing and visibility issues. One past intern described it as walking in a sand colored blizzard. But now the dust is pretty controlled in most areas. Kigezi Healthcare Foundation (KIHEFO) , the organization I am placed at is a locally run non-profit that owns a local clinic, HIV clinic, nutrition clinic, maternal clinic, rabbit breeding project, and numerous other community capacity building projects. I am currently working with the maternal clinic as well as the rabbit breeding project. I will be implementing logs for families that receive rabbits from the project in order to set up a form of formal monitoring and evaluation as well as helping to implement the World Health Organization Safe Childbirth Checklist in the maternal clinic.
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