Toss a stone into a pond and a ripple effect spreads out great distances from the point of impact. That’s how Rebecca Wasswa’s ministry, the Luke Society Uganda, has operated since opening in Kampala in 1996.
Wasswa is a registered nurse, but she might better be thought of as a teacher. One of her main ministry focuses is to train Christian community health workers who then return to their own communities and villages to assist with basic health-care needs.
Individuals are not trained to be nurses, but instead act as volunteer medical assistants, equipped with basic care knowledge. They provide referrals when a more serious medical situation warrants.
The ministry also has an economic development component, which uses microloans to help residents start small businesses. Wasswa has a small medical clinic in Kampala, though it does not function as a major part of her ministry focus.
Nurse Rebecca Wasswa’s gifts for teaching and training new medical professionals have enabled her to impact not only Kampala, Uganda, but the greater region of southern Uganda. Wasswa is a quiet servant of God whose accomplishments have had a profound impact in the country. Her patient personality allows her to be a highly effective community health educator.
Population: 37.1 million
Size: 241,038 sq. km, or slightly smaller than Oregon.
Borders: Democratic Republic of Congo to the west; South Sudan to the north; Kenya to the east; Rwanda, Tanzania and Lake Victoria to the south.
Religious groups: Protestant, 42%; Roman Catholic, 41.9%; Muslim, 12.1%
Primary language: English
Literacy (age 15+): 78.4%
Physician density: 0.12 doctors per 1,000 people.
Population below international poverty line: 19.7%
Life expectancy: 54.9 years
Infant mortality rate: 59.2 deaths per 1,000 live births.
Major exports: Coffee, fish, tea, cotton, flowers, gold.
Climate: Tropical; generally two dry seasons: December-February and June-August; semiarid in the northeast.
Terrain: Mostly plateau with rim of mountains.