Munnange Counseling Centre
On Nkumba University campus (http://www.nkumbauniversity.ac.ug) Munnange Counseling Centre offers individual counseling to students and teaching staff whilst also being accessible to people from neighbouring communities (outreach programme).
Clients come voluntarily or are referred to us by university staff or by the university health centre, a highly valued partner organisation.
Munnange Counseling Centre organises monthly info sessions for students on a wide range of topics such as alcohol or drug addiction, resilience and relationships. During the introduction week for new students and during the university health care week Munnange Counseling Centre provides information on psychological counselling.
Since the start Munnange Counseling Centre has set up partnerships with different organisations:
- Police offices of Entebbe and Abaita
The police office of Entebbe is a very important partner organisation for Munnange. When working at the police station Munnange follows the guidelines of the Ugandan Child and Family Protection Unit (CFPU). Occasionally the police of Abaita, a district in Entebbe, also works us.
The aim of the partnership is to integrate free counselling in the public service and provide psychological support to crime victims. Munnange also does crisis interventions. Our counselors also work with the crime perpetrators. This helps them not to relapse and it enhances social change. The most frequent problems are domestic violence, physical violence, juvenile crime, abuse and exploitation of young people.
- Neighbouring communities Nkumba Bufulu (Kitawuluzi) and Nkumba Bukolwa
Munnange Counseling Centre is active in two close by communities. We hand out brochures to residents and they also receive information on our different counselling activities through community-based radio talk shows. They can contact us for individual or group counselling. In the communities we focus our counselling on mental problems that have an impact on the individual, the family or the entire community. The village chiefs and local councils support this initiative.
- St Noah Senior Secondary School Nkumba and May Christian College Nkumba
School management refers their students to the Munnange counselors for mediation and support with issues that have an impact on the students” school work. The counseling takes place on the school premises, on an individual or group basis depending on the issues at hand. Recently students set up “Munnange clubs” to help raise awareness and bundle different problems. The most common problems are depression, low self-esteem, stress, relationships, puberty and addiction.
- Divine Child Primary School
This school is both an orphanage and a school for orphans, for children whose parents are in prison or children who have been rejected by their parents. Munnange offers both individual and group counselling. The problems that are discussed most frequently are low self-esteem, behavioural issues and sexuality. We are also preparing a partnership with Nkumba Primary School.
- Hope for Restoration Initiative (http://www.h4ri.org)
This partnership started in May 2017 and aims at bigger projects such as community counseling, counselling on the Lake Victoria islands and medical referrals (Hope has a medical department).
With the teaching staff at the Belgian college VIVES (https://www.vives.be/nl) we exchange knowledge and expertise and they organise workshops and conferences onsite at Nkumba University to further strengthen the study Psychological guidance and counselling. This ultimately creates a broad social and professional network and leads to even better educated counsellors. Every year Belgian students from the VIVES studies Social Work and Applied Psychology do a four-month internship from February until June at Munnange Counseling Centre as part of their bachelor degree.
This year Lynn-Marie Lambrecht and Pauline Verstraeten will be working with us in Entebbe. They both study Applied Psychology.
‘The vision of Munnange strongly appeals to me and it is a huge challenge to embark on this 4-month adventure. I hope that, together with Pauline, we can
‘I think it is great that Munnange focuses on reinforcing the existing strengths and protective factors rather than putting emphasis on what is going wrong.’ (Pauline Verstraeten)
Thanks to Congodorpen, a Belgian NGO active in the Democratic Republic of Congo for over 40 years, Munnange can now give an official fiscal certificate for gifts of minimum 40 Euro per year. Munnange pays Congodorpen 10% per gift for this service.