One Aids campaigner told me that Uganda had been fighting while three-quarters of Africa had been asleep. "As a woman living with HIV," she said, "I am lucky to live here."
Half a continent away, Senegal has used many of the same tactics to fight a different battle.
Unlike Uganda, it did not have to confront an epidemic. In Senegal, the virus has been contained, as if under lock and key.
Here the Aids strategy is a jigsaw of different elements - it had to be. The capital, Dakar, has a modern face but Senegal is a place of subtlety and contradictions. In her cramped office in the Polyclinic in Dakar, Katy Cisse Wone, sociologist and Aids campaigner, told me about her nation. "We surf the internet," she said, "but we still go to the witchdoctor when we have a problem."
Senegal's solution has been to get every part of society involved in the campaign. Sex workers are licensed and tested for HIV here - and even the imams in this Muslim country are part of the fight. They preach fidelity and abstinence but they allow Aids campaigners to promote condoms.
"We call it a chausette, or sock," El Hadj N'Diaye told me. This Senegalese singer had come racing to meet us, his guitar slung across his back.
His song about the risk of Aids has become an anthem in Senegal. In the song he tells his countrymen to "wear a sock." As he sang it for us on a dusty backstreet in Dakar, people walking by echoed the refrain.
With an HIV infection rate that is still below 2%, Senegal has become a poster nation for Aids prevention. But some are worried by this success.
During his early days as a young doctor Mustafa Gueye was powerless to save patients with Aids. Since then he has devoted his life to prevention. Now he is concerned that Senegal is getting complacent. "This country still has the potential to explode," he told us.
Other Aids campaigners told us the same thing. Soukaye Dieng Diop has been part of the fight since she held a young girl, dying of Aids, who begged for help.
"When we go to the factories these days to talk to the workers," she said, "the biggest problem is to convince people they are at risk. They tell me they don't know anyone with the virus and they have never seen anyone with Aids."
That's a problem many other African nations would envy.