Uganda: Program for Human and Holistic Development (UPHOLD)

The Uganda Program for Human and Holistic Development (UPHOLD) was a USAID-funded project empowered families, communities, and institutions to improve the quality and use of services in education, health, and HIV/AIDS. The program (2002-2008) was managed by JSI. Partners included The Manoff Group and local organizations.

The Manoff Group led Behavior Change Communication (BCC) activities throughout UPHOLD. Learn more through a report on our BCC activities, Upholding Positive Change: Behavior Change Communication Across Uganda's Uphold Project.


Activities focused on strengthening services for voluntary counseling and testing, including training on how to discuss test results with a partner; preventing mother-to-child transmission of HIV/AIDS; managing sexually transmitted infections; supporting people living with HIV/AIDS; and involving young people in addressing issues around HIV/AIDS.

Girls' education was promoted as part of an integrated education and HIV/AIDS prevention strategy. For World AIDS Day 2004, a story writing contest was launched in Bundibugyo District that resulted in the publication of "Brave Girls Who Go to School & Stay in School," a compilation of the winning stories.

The Safe School Contract (SSC) was developed with the Ministry of Education and Sports to increase retention rates, prevent sexual harassment and intergenerational sex, and educate students about early pregnancy and HIV/AIDS. The SSC encourages children to identify "Safety Friends" who will accompany them to meetings with adults, and calls for dialogue among parents, teachers, principals, and PTAs. Learn more through a presentation given at the 2009 Global Health Conference.

A “Listening Parents Guide” was created to help parents discuss the facts of HIV/AIDS with their younger adolescent children. Condom use was promoted among high-risk groups such as boda boda drivers and adolescents. We also organized a national tribute concert in honor of Philly Lutaaya, a popular musician and the first prominent Ugandan to give a human face to HIV/AIDS.

Community-Based Growth Promotion

UPHOLD supported community-based growth promotion (CBGP) in selected districts to help empower communities to prevent malnutrition among children under two years of age and to serve as a catalyst for solving problems of illness, poor feeding practices, or other childcare concerns at the community and household level. A Program Review was conducted to assess program operation, examine lessons learned, and measure the potential impact of CBGP. The review showed that villages with consistent participation among the under-two population had improved child growth trends.