Nile Breweries takes HIV/AIDS fight to bars
17 June 2011
Jinja, June 15, 2011 - Nile Breweries Limited, Uganda's beer market leader, has launched a Shs. 15 million campaign to provide HIV/AIDS voluntary counseling and testing (VCT) for workers in bars, lodges hotels and restaurants in the trading areas of Njeru and Mbiko near the brewery.
"This will be a door to door exercise covering retail outlets that sell our products in the area," said Mr. Onapito-Ekomoloit, the company's Corporate Affairs Director.
Nile Breweries Limited is partnering with St. Francis Health Care Services, an NGO hospital in Njeru that specializes in proving HIV/AIDS services.
"We shall provide counseling and testing to the hospitality workers in the privacy of their work places," said Mr. Faustine Ngarambe, the Executive Director of St. Francis Health Care Services.
The programme is targeting an estimated 500 hospitality workers in Njeru and Mbiko, which are also popular over night stops for long distance truck drivers plying from Mombosa to different parts of the Great Lakes region.
"These are HIV/AIDS high risk areas, and we want to help ensure our customers and consumers are alert," said Onapito.
Nile Breweries Limited and its parent company SABMiller have a strong interest in combating HIV/AIDS and reducing the impact of the disease.
The consumption of alcohol does not result in a person contracting HIV. However, a person who drinks irresponsibly may indulge in risky sexual behavior which increases the risk of them contracting HIV/AIDS, particularly in high prevalence areas.
The VCT for hospitality workers is the latest in a series of initiatives by Nile Breweries to combat HIV/AIDS, both in our work place and more importantly in the supply chain.
We call our programme "From Grain to Glass" because it covers all stakeholders from the farmers who produce grain for us to brew beer to consumers of our product in a glass.
FACTS & FIGURES ABOUT "FROM GRAIN TO GLASS"
- 99% of employees have undergone VCT.
- 375 farmers of sorghum and barley have been trained as peer educators for their communities.
- 13,292 farmers have been trained on HIV/AIDS awareness.
- 1,300 hospitality workers have been trained on HIV/AIDS awareness.
- 248 truck drivers have been trained on HIV/AIDS and provided VCT.
- 300 orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) due to HIV/AIDS have been supported.
- Home-based counseling and testing (HBCT) project piloted among farmers in Katakwi.
- 4, 595 farmers have been provided VCT under the HBCT project.
- We have provided HIV/AIDS VCT to 7,558 people in our supply chain.