Key Population-led Organizations Must Expand Service Provision To Cover Domestic Violence and HIV-infection

This article was picked up from Uganda Human Rights Watch Website.

The human disaster of HIV/AIDS (human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome), which has devastated the populations of countries worldwide, is having an increasingly disproportionate effect on women and girls. Women now constitute the majority of infected adults in sub-Saharan Africa, North Africa, and the Middle East. In addition to an increased physiological susceptibility to HIV infection, violations of women’s rights heighten their vulnerability to AIDS. Women’s subordinate position in marriage; unequal access to economic opportunity, medical resources, information, and education; and, discriminatory property and legal rights, are just some of the factors that sustain the escalation of the pandemic, and make women particularly vulnerable to HIV infection.
Unremedied domestic violence, which is itself a widespread and chronic abuse of women all over the world, plays a critical role in exposing women to HIV infection. Violence, or the fear of violence, prevents women from freely accessing HIV/AIDS information, from negotiating condom use, and from resisting unprotected sex with an HIV-positive partner. Women may also face violence as a result of their own HIV-positive status. Traditional practices such as widow inheritance (the “inheritance” by a man of his brother’s widow) expose women to unprotected sex with male in-laws, while the payment of bride price (payment made by a man to the family of a woman he wishes to marry), establishes women as the physical property of their spouses, and underscores men’s authority to dictate the terms of sex. Women’s economic dependence compounds their vulnerability to violence and HIV-infection and leaves them unable to escape from potentially deadly marriages.
Domestic violence is the result of historically persistent restraints on women’s equality and sexual autonomy that have been inadequately addressed by governments worldwide. Women all over the world are confronted with social environments that sustain unequal power relations. They are forced to contend with persistent societal pressure to tolerate violence and are routinely subjected to coercion and emotional abuse from husbands and extended family. The reluctance of state officials to intervene in domestic matters and to undermine male authority in the home ensures that battered women are left unaided and condemned to endless abuse. While some countries have enacted specific domestic violence legislation, weak enforcement procedures may render such laws ineffective, while other countries lack an approach to the subject altogether.
In order to protect women from violence in the home and to decrease women’s vulnerability to infection, the enactment of comprehensive domestic violence laws that punish offenders and compensate victims is critical. Governments must repeal and amend discriminatory laws that violate international standards on women’s rights in marriage and women’s equal rights to property, and eradicate harmful traditional practices that subjugate women in marriage and subordinate them sexually to their husbands. Governments must also incorporate a focus on violence in the home as part of their HIV/AIDS national programming. Donor agencies, regional and international organizations can also play an important part by encouraging governments to include the specific needs of women at risk of HIV infection in broader HIV/AIDS programming, and by supporting governmental and NGO programs that directly address domestic violence and HIV/AIDS.
For more information on the link between domestic violence and HIV/AIDS in a case study on Uganda, see the Human Rights Watch report “Just Die Quietly: Domestic Violence & Women’s Vulnerability to HIV-infection in Uganda,” available at
Government and Non-government Organizations in Uganda Where Domestic Violence-related issues can be reported:

The Uganda Police ( Family Unit)

The Uganda Human Rights Commission
Plot 22/24 Buganda Road
P.O.BOX 4929 K’la
Kampala, Uganda
Tel: 348006/8230805
Fax: 256 41 255261

Foundation for Human Rights Initiative
C/o British Council Uganda
Tel: 256-41 510263/510498
Fax: 09256 41 2 54853

Action for Development (ACFODE)
Issues: Addressing issues of injustice against marginalised women
PO Box 16729, Kampala
Tel: 256 41 532311
Fax: 256 41 530460

Akina Mama Wa Afrika / African Women's Leadership Institute
Plot 18 Bukoto Street, Kamwokya,
P.O. Box 24130, Kampala
Tel/Fax: 256 41 54368 -1/ -2/ -3

Associates for Change
Issues: Women and Development
Plot 29/29A Voice of Toro Building
3rd Floor, Room 11 Nkrumah Road
P.O. Box 9627, Kampala
Tel: (256 41) 324230/242 230/242230
Fax: (256 41) 250993

Gender Advisory Board Africa Region Secretariat
P.O Box 4125, Kampala, Uganda
Street Address
Clement Hill Road, Plot 34, Nakasero
Tel: 256-41-341666 / 259904
Fax: 256-41-259904

Hope After Rape (HAR)
Facilitate the recovery of abused children, women and their families through training, research, advocacy and provision of psychosocial support services.
Program Officer Wilbrode Ngaweb
Tel: 077-754-550
Postal Address: P.O. Box 7621, Kampala, Uganda
Street Address 1C Kira Road
Tel 256-41-251201/234799

Human Rights Network or FIDA
Legal Clinic
#2157 Plot No. 54
Bukoto St.
Kamwokya, Kampala
Tel: 256-41-530848
Fax: 256 41 530 848

International Women's Resource Centre based in Kampala, Uganda (Isis-WICCE)
Working to eliminate injustice based on unequal power relations, to improve women's economic, social and political situation.
PO Box 4934, Kampala
Tel: (256 41) 266 007
Fax: (256 41) 268 676

Isis Women's International Cross-Cultural Exchange (ISIS-WICCE)
Issues: Human Rights, Violence Against Women
Executive Director is Ruth Ojiambo ochieng
P. O. Box 4934, Kampala
Tel: 256 41 543953
Fax: 256 41 543954

Medical Foundation
Issues: Human Rights, Lesbian Rights, Mental Health, Violence Against Women
P.O. Box 269, Kampala
TE: (256) 41-244437
Fax: (256) 41-345580

National Coalition on Violence Against Women
Issues: Made up of more than 20 Ugandan NGOs covering a wide range of women's and other organisations
Department of Women and Gender Studies, Makerere University
P.O.Box 7062, Kampala
Tel: 256 41 531484
Fax: 256 41 543539
E-mail: or

Traditional Healers Together Against AIDS (THETA)
Tel: 256 41 532 930
Fax: 256 41 530 619
Raising Voices
P.O. Box 6770, Kampala
Tel: 256 41 829 626
Fax: 256 41 531 249

Uganda Gender Resource Centre - URGC
Issues: Human Rights, Policy/Government, Political Participation, Violence Against Women, Research, training, promotion of women's rights, information & documentation, advocacy and lobbying, institution building.
National Theatre 2nd Floor, Room 2
PO Box 9933, Kampala
Tel: 256 41 250 249
Fax: 256 41 245 580

Uganda Women's Network (UWONET)
Issues: Advocacy network, working towards transforming unequal gender relations.
PO Box 6972, Kampala
Tel: 041-543968
Fax: 255144

Uganda YWCA
The Uganda YWCA has programs on HIV/AIDs, violence against women peace-building and has a membership of more than 2 million women all across the country.
1-3 George Street, Kampala
Postal Address: P.O. Box 2108, Kampala
Tel: (256-41) 54 39 53
Fax: (256-41) 54 39 54

Women Children and Security (WCAS)
Peace Habomugisha
P.O. Box 16144, Wandegeya, Kampala
Fax: 256 41 530 412

Women and Law in East Africa-Uganda (WLEA)
PO Box 24456, Kampala
Tel: 256 (41) 554298
Fax: 256 (41) 554297

Women in Law and Development in Africa - Uganda Chapter (WILDAF)
Issues: Women’s rights; Capacity building; Emergency Response System; Lobbying and Advocacy; Research
Postal Address: P. O. Box 27637, Kampala
Street Address: ISIS WICCE Building,
Plot 32 Bukoto Street, Kamwokya
Tel: 256-41-543953

Ministry of Gender and Community Development
P.O. Box 2475, Kampala
Tel: (251-41) 267015
Fax: (251-41) 267015
National Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS in Uganda (NACWOLA)
P.O. Box 4485, Kampala
Makindye along Lukuli Nanganda Road
Tel: 256-41-269694
Fax: 256-41-269694

Uganda AIDS Commission
213 Sentema Road (Mengo)
P.O. Box 10779
Tel: 256 41 273538 OR 273231
Fax: 256 41 258173
(Mandate includes: preventing transmission of HIV infection with focus on Gender issues and the special situation and needs of women.
Uganda AIDS Prevention and Care Organisation
Hoima Road 15
Kampala 256
Tel: 00256-4153262; 00256-41534375
Fax: 00256-41347071

Association of Uganda Women Medical Doctors (AUWMD)
P.O. Box 10035
Kiswa Health Center
Tel: 256-41-251-333
Fax: 256-41-344-059

National Association of Women's Organizations in Uganda (NAWOU)
P.O. Box 63
Perrymans Gardens, Plot 1
Kampala, Uganda
Tel: 1: 256-41-258-463/257-730
Fax: 256-41-345-293

Society of Women Against AIDS in Africa (SWAAU)
1st Floor THETA Clinic,
Mawanda Road,
(Off Mulago Hospital)
Tel: 256-41-530221/77-620293
Fax: 256-41-531807

Uganda People Defence and Post - Test Club
Mailing address: P.O. Box 28814 Kampala
Telephone contact: 25677

National Guidance and Empowerment Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS in Uganda (NGEN)
Mailing address: P.O. Box 10028, Kampala, Uganda
Telephone (with country code): (256) 77 403836 or (256)-041-259481
Fax: (256) 41-343301

National Association of Women's Organizations in Uganda (NAWOU)
P.O. Box 63
Perrymans Gardens, Plot 1
Kampala, Uganda
Phone 1: 256-41-258-463/257-730
Fax: 256-41-345-293

AIDS Information Centre
Address: P.O. Box, Kampala , Uganda
Telephone: 256-41-270022
Fax: 256-41-347603

The AIDS Support Organisation Ltd.
Address: P.O. Box 10443 , Kampala , Uganda
Telephone: 256-41-567637/ 075750034
Fax: 256-41-566704

P.O. Box 8213
Tel: 256-78-261-190
Fax: 256-41-545-001
E-mail: /


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