Rev. Obadiah Mushene
October 5, 2020
“I am very thankful to NCCK and CHAK for having empowered me through the trainings they conducted. I am now seen as a resourceful person in the community on matters related to HIV/AIDS with men. I am also thankful to the donors for supporting this initiative. I have seen the change it is making in my community.“Rev. Obadiah
My name is The Very. Rev. Obadiah Obiki Mushene. I am the provost at Emmanuel Cathedral, A.C.K Diocese of Kajiado. I have been a provost at the Cathedral for two years.
I was contacted by NCCK Lower Eastern to take part in a training program on HIV/AIDS messages of hope. It is through the trainings that I gathered enough knowledge and insight to be able to help the men in my community in matters related to HIV/AIDS.
After the training, I took part in radio shows and had a session on 23rd July 2020 (8.00am – 9.00am) at Mayian FM. It was in the program that I addressed the men in my community about HIV/AIDS. I used the platform to pass the messages of hope and have an open discussion with the men. I was basing my information from the statistics that was shared with me by the NCCK Lower Eastern team. I also referenced the guide provided during the trainings to be able to tailor my message to the men.
I started getting a number of calls after the radio show from other church leaders inviting me to go and train the men in their congregation on HIV/AIDS. So far, I have managed to train men from three churches i.e. Baptist Sultan Hamud (20 men), St. Faith Olkungo A.C.K (32men) and St. Mary’s Oloontona A.C.K (70 men).
In my trainings, I urged the men to go and get tested. I assured them that a positive result would not mean death as there are ways of living a healthy life while managing the disease. I also shared the message of hope by the Arch Bishop Ole Sapit. This was well received and loved among the men as it was very direct.
One of the main challenges that the men in my community are facing in regard to getting tested, is the fear of opening up to young ladies. In most of the health facilities, it is young ladies who do the tests. The men in my community do not feel comfortable opening up to these ladies. In such cases, I mentioned the option of self-test kit. I made an effort to however emphasize the need to go to a health facility to have the results confirmed.
I have since received feedback from one of my friends who runs a health facility on the increased number of men who are showing up to get tested. The tests in the health facility (Maparasho facility, Matapata ward in Kajiado Central) are done by a man.
I have also been contacted by the host (Diana Daldo) of the radio station inviting me back to the show to speak more to the men on HIV/AIDS. We are discussing the way forward in that.
I would like to ask the donors and NCCK not to tire when it takes a while before seeing the results of such a project; especially when it comes to men. I would also urge them to use and involve the locals in communities in the future trainings to help move the conversation of men and HIV/AIDs further.
I am very thankful to NCCK and CHAK for having empowered me through the trainings they conducted. I am now seen as a resourceful person in the community on matters related to HIV/AIDS with men. I am also thankful to the donors for supporting this initiative. I have seen the change it is making in my community.
Watch the testimony from Rev. Obadiah on the link below.