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International News
Ugandan NGO Begins Food Security, Nutrition Program for HIV-Positive People

January 21, 2009

The Ugandan nongovernmental organization PREFA, which aims to prevent HIV/AIDS among families, has begun a food security and nutrition program for HIV-positive people in the Bulisa, Kayunga and Masindi districts, PREFA Executive Director David Serukka said recently, New Vision reports. Serukka said increased efforts to address food security and nutrition can help meet the United Nations Millennium Development Goals target of achieving universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support by 2010.

According to Serukka, HIV-positive people receiving antiretroviral drugs "require a lot in terms of diet." He said that adequate nutrition complements and reinforces the effect of antiretrovirals. "Often neglected, food security and nutrition are critical for individuals, households and communities affected by HIV," Serukka said, adding that a "[l]ack of food security and poor nutrition may hasten progression to AIDS-related illnesses and undermine adherence and response to antiretroviral therapy." Serukka said that the group has mobilized communities to become more involved in agricultural efforts, adding that agricultural programs will "enable people with HIV/AIDS to engage in income-generating activities" (Nanyonjo, New Vision, 1/18).

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