Wednesday, December 1, 2010

It's That Time of the Year Again

Dear Friends,
If I could sum up our activities this past 11 months with two words, I would say 'Strategic Partnerships'!! So much has happened at K'arale that brings us ever closer to our mission of bringing quality health to the hard to reach.

We collaborated with various organisations and institutions that enabled us extend our services and make impact in lives.

With AIDS Preventive Initiative Nigeria(APIN) to serve and support 180 Children orphaned by HIV/AIDS in 6 local governments in Lagos in an OVC project. K’arale was chosen because of our excellent track record, accountability capability and committed staff. The 6+ core services provided include – Education and vocational training, Protection/legal, Shelter, Psychosocial, Nutritional, Health and Economic strengthening.

With PrimaryHealth Centers (Iru, Epe, Ibeju Lekki, Apapa, Lagos Island) in our designated Local Government Areas in order to reach out to their HIV/AIDS support groups and to the children.
So far we have enrolled 136 kids in this project. These are children between 18mths - 17 years who have lost one or both parents to AIDS. We support the family and monitor their progress through home visits, school visits and monthly Kiddies Club meetings.
With Lagos State Ministry of Education for approval to carry out HIV prevention peer education projects with students in senior secondary classes.
We have collaborated with APIN to provide HIV testing services and train over 150 willing prisoners as HIV peer educators in Ikoyi prisons, Lagos
We have trained over 100 young girls in a Remand home in Surulere on HIV/AIDS prevention.

Thanks to the generosity of you, K'arale friends, We are almost through with our first PortaKlinic situated at Kuramo.
We have many challenges ahead of us as we wrap up the year and prepare for the next year - Getting funding to finish our PortaKlinic ready, Increase government cooperation, pay overheads, resolving the myriad needs of our OVC. But with your continued support, I am confident that we're up to the task at hand.

We especially wish to express our heartfelt appreciation to:
Chief and Mrs Mabogunje
Chief Ajibola Ogunsola
Chief Gbolade Osibodu
AO & A Associates
Mrs Betty Obere of Living Fountain Orphanage Home
Mrs Toki Mabogunje of TMC
OR Series Ltd
Medical Coordinators in the Epe/Iru/Ibeju lekki/Apapa Primary Health Centers
To the Children and Families who have put their trust in us and let us into their homes and hearts, 
Friends and well wishers,
Our dear Trustees and Staff,
Without you, we wouldn't have made it this far.

On a joyful note, our dear founder and Chairman Sade Ogunsola celebrated her birthday recently. Here's wishing her a year filled with the same joy she brings to others! Happy Birthday Prof!
If you are still wondering why you should sow a seed in K'arale this December, here are two reasons -
Today is World AIDS Day. Do your bit to Stop the spread of AIDS in your community. Give to K'arale.
Today is the 1st day of Christmas. A season of joy and giving. Give to K'arale.
Karale's account number with Guaranty Trust Bank Plc is 230 681575 110. No amount is too much. There's so much still to be done… and we need you to make it happen!!

Thank you and have a blessed Yuletide Season from all of us!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

African Leaders and their First Ladies tackle Maternal, Child Health

On the 18th of July 2010 in Kampala, Uganda, the Ugandan First Lady, Janet Kataha Museveni presided over an important session of the meeting of African First Ladies, devoted to the theme of the debate that their powerful husbands had just concluded on “Promoting Maternal, Infant and Child Health and Development in Africa".

The move was seen as a strategic success and welcome to governments and organizations promoting maternal and child health in Africa, because African First Ladies have traditionally focused their work on HIV and AIDS through their umbrella organization: Organisation for African First Ladies Against AIDS (OAFLA).
Ms Thoraya Obaid, UNFPA’s Executive Director, one of the keynote speakers at the event, thinks it has been a mistake to think of maternal and child health matters as

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Cash Rewards as an HIV prevention strategy

By Alex Ogle, Yahoo! News

WASHINGTON (AFP) – The World Bank released two studies Sunday linking cash payments to Malawian and Tanzanian youths with "significantly lower" rates of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.

In the first study, a two-year program rewarded young girls in Malawi, rife with poverty and high HIV infection rates, with cash payments for regular school attendance. In Tanzania, the Bank paid young adults in cash to avoid unsafe sex.

The studies "show the potential for using cash payments to prevent people, especially women and girls, from engaging in unsafe sex while also ensuring that they stay in school and

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

From the 18th AIDS Conference in Vienna

In the beautiful city of Vienna, Austria between 23-28 July 2010 AIDS activists, researchers, decision makers, scientists, policy makers, grassroots workers and people living with HIV gathered for a structured dialogue regarding the major issues on the global response to HIV/AIDS – a disease that has killed more than 25 million people. The theme of the conference which was the 18th since the outbreak of AIDS epidemic in the early 80s was “Rights Here, Rights Now”.
What happened in Vienna 2010 (AIDS 2010)
The AIDS 2010 conference theme emphasizes the central importance of protecting and promoting human rights as a prerequisite to a successful response to HIV. The right to

Friday, August 6, 2010

Cure for AIDS on the way

In the news, there are encouraging reports about 2 breakthroughs in the search for a treatment to reverse the trend of the deadly AIDS virus.

The latest is the Anti-AIDS gel – a vaginal gel which has proved capable of blocking the AIDS virus thus cutting by 50% a woman’s chances of getting HIV from a partner. The gel, spiked with the AIDS drug tenofovir, cut the risk of HIV infection by

Monday, June 28, 2010

Can We Talk about Abstinence and Contraception OR Is It a Mixed Message?

I came across this article written by Konstance McCaffree, Ph.D. Adjunct Professor, Center for Education Sexuality Program, Widener University and thought I should share it with you.
Parents care about their children and want them to grow up healthy and safe. They want their children to avoid an unplanned teen pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections, and HIV. Some want their children to avoid sexual intercourse or other sexual behaviors until they are old enough to make good, informed, and responsible decisions. Others want their children to wait

Friday, June 4, 2010

Tackling plastic waste

In Ghana's capital, Accra, the streets are choked with trash and littered with plastic waste that blocks gutters and clogs storm drains.

Drinking water comes in sachets that cost a few cents. Cheap and convenient, they are sold in shops and by street hawkers. But once they have been drunk they are often simply dropped on the ground.
When British entrepreneur Stuart Gold saw Accra's plastic problem he recognized an opportunity for a business venture — an NGO that could clean up the streets and create jobs in the community.
His idea was to collect discarded sachets, Two-and-a-half years later, Trashy Bags makes around 250 items a week and produces 350 different designs of bags, wallets and raincoats.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Do you live in a Slum?

"Migrants from impoverished hinterlands, living without security, public health, and, often, clean water in the shantytowns of São Paulo, Lagos, Karachi, Dhaka, and Jakarta, have as much in common with each other as "People Like Us"–the global class of businessmen, journalists, academics, and anti-terrorism experts–do among themselves." –Pankaj Mishra, Bombay: The Lower Depths, New York Review of Books, November 18, 2004.

Lagos as a whole has been dubbed 'a slum' by foreign journalists that is, if we check her characteristics against UN’s operational definition[3]: a human settlement in an urban area that has the following characteristics:

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Health: The best gift you can give

K’arale had her first fundraiser to benefit our PortaKlinic Project last Sunday, the 18th of April, 2010. This first project benefits Kuramo especially; a slum community living on the coastline here in Lagos by providing Quality basic health Services through the clinic.

The event was pretty formal and guests; largely made up of family and close friends of K’arale management numbered 30. It was an opportunity to tell a larger audience about our dream of quality health for the poor and how we hope to achieve it.

Kuramo is a community most dear to K’arale. I have written about

Changemakers competition

Dear Friend of K’arale,

K’arale participated in the Changemakers competition “Healthy Mothers, Strong World”. A competition which sought for the next generation of innovative, sustainable and impactful solutions for Maternal/Child Health.
It was an opportunity for us to sell our PortaKlinic idea to a panel of judges, connect with fellow entrants and find out what they are doing in the field. A single PortaKlinic can serve 10,000 people per annum. If we are shortlisted

Thursday, March 25, 2010

World TB Day: 10 facts about TB

1. Mantoux test is done to identify patients who are infected with the tuberculous infection; they may or may not have the disease. This test is also used as a public-health measure to detect infection in patient's family and friends.
2. Kinyoun stain shows presence of mycobacteria in sputum sample.

Fact 1

Tuberculosis (TB) is contagious and spreads through the air. If not treated, each person with active TB can infect on average 10 to 15 people a year.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Stopping the educational decline

I am disheartened about the just released 2009 NECO results of Senior secondary students in Nigeria. According to sources (click here), only 1.8% [of 234,682 students ]made the requisite 5 credits subject pass (including in English and Mathematics) needed for higher degree study. In 2008, it was 27.64%.

That is a too wide chasm for students to have fallen through in one year. How could our secondary school education have declined so rapidly?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Helping Teens Celebrate Valentine’s Day

K'arale organized a special pre-Valentine's day program with the students from Senior State High School Ikeja on the 12th of February, 2010 to promote 'Loving with care'.
The objective of the program was to
  1. Educate the kids about the true meaning of Valentine, about its history and how it is celebrated, who can be your Valentine,etc
  2. Reiterate ABC messages
  3. Remind them of pitfalls to avoid on the day: late nights out, drinking, smoking, going out with groups of friends who are known to indulge in risky behaviour, pregnancy, fatal diseases.
The high point of the program was the making of Valentine Cards by Students
It was 2 hrs of fun!!! The students came up with quite interesting designs and messages:

Friday, January 15, 2010

She Speaks: Prof Sade Ogunsola

It’s a New Year, New Hopes and aspirations, New Grace. Happy 2010 everyone.

I would like to introduce a monthly interview series to our blog. The interview series will be about special people in the non-profit world we move in. They touch us with their passion, their generosity and their strength.

Our first blog for the year is an interview with K’arale’s founder, the extra-and not ordinary Folasade Ogunsola!!
Folasade Ogunsola is a Professor of medical microbiology at the College of Medicine, University of Lagos. Her education background includes an MB CHB and a Masters degree from the University of Lagos and a PHD from University of Wales. She is happily married to Segun Ogunsola and has 3 lovely children.

Tell me how you first got involved with K’arale?
It was through my work

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Re: The mess called Kuramo

This post is written in response to Gbenga Olatunji on his article on the Sunday Guardian[03/01/2010] about Kuramo. Kuramo the site of our first PortaKlinic is a community dear to K’arale. I do welcome responses on what can be done to improve life for its inhabitants. We also welcome the input of other NGOs interested in training the many jobless youth there to become economically empowered.
Dear Mr Olatunji,
I do agree with you; Kuramo, the most central and easily accessible beach in Lagos is a mess in its present state but before we condemn and destroy, we need to understand.