Star Support Group – Yambio (Western Equatoria State) South Sudan
The context of Foundation supported projects in Southern Sudan is the aftermath of many years of civil war which has left the region’s infrastructure in tatters. STAR Support Group is one of very few providers of services for people in Yambio area living with HIV/AIDS, a huge problem in the aftermath of the civil war and estimated to be about 15% of the population of Western Equatorial State. Yambio, the capital of Western Equatorial State, is a large centre near the borders with the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda.
STAR Support Group, which began in 2004 with five members, has grown to well over 1200 at present. At the time of its founding, Christmas was approaching, so STAR was chosen as the name because it was the Star that gave hope and direction. From a small feeding and prayer group, STAR has developed into a social/medical program that provides home based care, practical support and counselling for sufferers and families and community education to reduce infection rates and improve care. Following a review during 2010, a decision was taken to discontinue the specifically clinical/medical aspects of the STAR service and these were phased out during 2011 and transferred to the Comboni Sisters Hospital in nearby Nzara.
STAR Support Group operates under the leadership of Br Frederick Otieno. The staff includes two counsellors. A nurse and two assistants also support patients in the clinic.
Waiting Area, Star Support Group