Mount Elgon National Park—located in eastern Uganda—covers an area of 1,279 square kilometers and is bisected by the border of Kenya and Uganda. It became a national park in the 1990s and is also a UNESCO Man and Biosphere Reserve and an important source of water for the Lake Victoria Basin. Together with the fauna and flora, including elephants that mine salt in the caves, the park has a variety of scenery including cliffs, caves, waterfalls, gorges, mesas, calderas, hot springs and the mountain peaks.
All target frontline communities in Mt. Elgon National Park, Uganda are within 1 km of the park boundary. CTPH has programs within three districts—Bukwo, Kween and Bulambuli—each facing challenges related to their mountain ecosystem and proximity to the park; this includes high population densities, environmental degradation and human/wildlife conflict. Bukwo District covers 33 km along the park boundary with 8 sub-counties and 20 parishes and CTPH is working in 2 parishes with the highest need. Kween has four sub-counties neighboring the national park and CTPH is working in one parish. Bulambuli runs 18 km along the park boundary in 6 sub counties and 16 parishes and CTPH is working within 2 parishes.
CTPH scaled up the Village Health and Conservation Team (VHCT) model piloted at Bwindi Impenetrable National Park to communities around Mount Elgon National Park. Through an integrated population, health and environment (PHE) approach, we work with VHCTs to provide service delivery in regards to family planning and community and ecosystem health and collect monthly indicators from the communities on health and conservation.