People with albinism are hidden away, hunted and even killed for their body parts in areas of eastern Uganda. With no access to information about the condition, communities can be led to believe in false myths, with dangerous consequences.
Myths around albinism are widespread and dangerous.
People with albinism are hunted for their body parts because they are said to bring good fortune; women with albinism face a higher risk of sexual abuse because sex with a person with albinism is thought to bring wealth and cure HIV/Aids. Faced with such stigma and danger, people living with albinism tend to live in isolation.
1. We helped people with albinism to form local groups to campaign for their rights and fight back against dangerous myths. Together we:
2. Campaigned for cheaper sun protection. We built the capacity of activists so they could lobby and influence policy makers to waive the tax on sunscreen for people with albinism, who have highly sensitive skin and are more susceptible to skin cancer.
3. Held community ‘sensitization’ workshops. Activists educated others about the challenges faced by people with albinism, running successful workshops with local government leaders, police, religious leaders and traditional healers.
4. Run media campaigns. Activists featured on radio and television talk shows to raise awareness about the condition.
Many have now been successful in finding other funding partners, namely Advantage Africa, who are helping them continue their work helping thousands of people with Albinism in Uganda.
Feed hungry children,Provide shelter to those without
"In 2009, people started sacrificing people with albinism."
I was still at school, and my tutors would tell me not to go to town because of the sacrificing. I was so scared, even before they had told me not to go into town… I had stopped going.
My father was educated, so when I was born my parents took it well and they loved me, they have never said they don’t love me. But the community around us discriminated against me. People would call me names or abuse me, they would say ‘these people are not human beings, they are like pigs’. I would feel bad, I would ask my mum ‘why are they calling me a pig?’ Sometimes I would cry, the other kids wouldn’t want to play with me.
I joined a group of albinism activists and my life changed.
Thanks to you and Taasa for having funded this campaign , You have given us training in advocacy and campaigning. We have run training, workshops and media campaigns to raise awareness of albinism as a medical condition and to challenge the myths that exist.
People in the community have been sensitized. Now they understand what it means to have albinism, that we are not ghosts or demons but human beings as well.
I feel like there is a change, there is improvement.