Bridges to the Future

Bridges to the Future

Principal Investigator: Fred Ssewamala, PhD

Project Team Members: Irwin Garfinkel, PhD, Jane Waldfogel, PhD, Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, PhD, Torsten Neilands, PhD

Field Coordinators: Miriam Mukasa, Christopher Damulira

Research Collaborators: Abel Mwebembezi (Reach the Youth-Uganda), Fr. Kato Bakulu (Masaka Diocese)

Bridges to the Future: A Family-Based Economic Empowerment Intervention for Children Orphaned by AIDS in Uganda, is a five-year longitudinal study (2011-2016) funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institutes of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD). It evaluates the impact and cost-effectiveness of an innovative family-based economic empowerment intervention for orphans made vulnerable by AIDS. The study intervention includes a matched savings account registered in the child’s name, income-generating activity training, and mentorship. The intervention aims to encourage saving money for secondary education, promote microenterprise development to generate family income and provide support programs to protect children from future risks. Currently the study is in a no-cost extension.

Bridges to the Future Publications

Karimli, L., Ssewamala, F. M., Neilands, T.B., Wells, C.R., & Bermudez, L.G. (2019). Poverty, economic strengthening, and mental health among AIDS orphaned children in Uganda: Mediation model in a randomized clinical trial. Social Science & Medicine, 228:17-24. doi: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2019.03.003. Science Direct

Kivumbi, A., Byansi, W., Ssewamala, F. M., Nabunya, P., Damulira, C., & Namatovu, P. (2019). Utilizing a family-based economic strengthening intervention to improve mental health wellbeing among female adolescent orphans in Uganda. Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health, 13, 14. doi: 10.1186/s13034-019-0273-4. Biomed Central

Nabunya, P., Namatovu, P., Damulira, C., Kivumbi, A., Byansi, W., Mukasa, M., Nattabi J. & Ssewamala, F.M. (2019). Assessing the impact of an economic empowerment interventions on educational outcomes of orphaned children and adolescents: Findings from a randomized experiment in Uganda. Asia Pacific Journal of Social Work Development, 29(1), 59-69. doi:10.1080/02185385.2019.1575271. Taylor & Francis Online

Nabunya, P., Padgett, D., Ssewamala, F. M., Courtney, M.E., & Neilands, T (2019). Examining the nonkin support networks of orphaned adolescents participating in a family-based economic-strengthening intervention in Uganda. Journal of Community Psychology; 47(3):579-593. doi: 10.1002/jcop.22139. Wiley

Wang, J. S-H., Ssewamala, F. M., Neilands, T.B., Gauer Bermudez, L., Garfinkel, I., Waldfogel, J., Brooks-Gunn, J & You, J. (2018). Effects of financial incentives on savings outcomes and material-wellbeing: Evidence from a randomized controlled trial in Uganda. Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, 37(3), 602-629. Wiley

Ssewamala, F. M., Wang, J. S-H., Neilands, T.B., Gauer Bermudez, L., Garfinkel, I., Waldfogel, J., Brooks-Gunn, J., & Kirkbride, G. (2018). Cost-Effectiveness of a savings matched economic empowerment intervention for AIDS-affected adolescents in Uganda: Implications for scale-up in low resource communities. Journal of Adolescent Health, 62(S1), 29-36. PMCID: PMC5744872. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2017.09.026. Science Direct

Nabunya, P., Ssewamala, F. M., Mukasa, M. N. Byansi, & Nattabi, J. (2015). Peer mentorship program and HIV/AIDS knowledge, beliefs and prevention attitudes among AIDS- orphaned adolescents: An evidence based practice. Vulnerable Children & Youth Studies, 10(4), 345-356. doi:10.1080/17450128.2015.1115157. Taylor & Francis Online

Ssewamala, F. M., Nabunya, P., Ilic, V., Mukasa, M. N., & Damulira, C. (2015). Relationship between family economic resources, psychosocial well-being, and educational preferences of AIDS-orphaned children in southern Uganda: Baseline findings. Global Social Welfare, 2(2), 75-86. doi: 10.1007/s40609-015-0027-z. Springer

Nabunya, P. & Ssewamala, F. M. (2014). The effects of parental loss on the psychosocial wellbeing of AIDS-orphaned children living in AIDS-impacted communities: Does gender matter? Children and Youth Services Review, 43, 131- 137. doi:10.1016/j.childyouth.2014.05.011. Science Direct

Ssewamala, F. M., Nabunya, P., Mukasa, M., Ilic, V., & Nattabi, J. (2014). Integrating a mentorship component in programming for care and support of AIDS- orphaned and vulnerable children: Lessons from the Suubi and Bridges Programs in sub-Saharan Africa. Global Social Welfare, 1(1), 9-24. doi: 10.1007/s40609-014-0008-7. Springer

Ssewamala, F. M., Gauer-Bermudez, L. G., & Santelli, J. (2018). The power of financial inclusion: Reporting on the efficacy of economic strengthening interventions in sub-Saharan Africa. Journal of Adolescent Health, 62(S1), 3-S5. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2017.11.001. Journal of Adolescent Health