Our initiatives are wisely selected and are locally owned by the communities we work with to improve their livelihoods. Through environmental conservation, alternative empowerment, farm enterprises, water and sanitation we are able to contribute to the wellbeing of people living in rural communities.
1. Environmental Conservation and sustainability (ECoS)
This initiative aims at engaging communities in increasing biodiversity, enhancing socio-economic benefits and gender inclusiveness where both women and men are given open opportunities to turn their communities and farms into eco system units that enrich diversity and productivity in an environment threatened by climate change.
- Trees for farmer families and schools. Smallholder farmers and schools receive free or donated tree seedlings to plant them in their farms and compounds. Trees planted on their farms will provide fruits, firewood, medicinal values, fodder for livestock and improve soil fertility among other benefits thus making them more resilient to climate change. Our fruit tree seedlings are raised by a local woman and her family as a small scale enterprise established over 10 years ago in seedling development.
- Eco-schools facilitating better learning. This initiative aims at engaging young people in acquiring practical skills in conserving the environment to make them stewards of nature with improved access to tools and knowledge to foster development and environmental stewardship.Through Outdoor learning methods, pupils and students get hands on experience on how they can transform their schools and communities into more productive and livable environments and exposes them to better learning and sustainability.
- Green Villages energy Interventions (GVEI). People living in rural communities use unsafe energy options to light their homes and also use wasteful energy options that require a lot of firewood to cook for their families. We are promoting green energy options in communities and families we work with. among these include; affordable solar energy options and Eco-friendly cooking options.
Our Dongo improved cook stoves are made from mud a locally available material making them cheap, they save more firewood than the traditional stoves, produce less smoke, they are safer and durable.
2. Alternative Empowerment Opportunities (ALEO).
Many families are stuck in poverty due to lack of employment and skills that would enable them break out of the poor living conditions they live in. This initiative aims at improving the lives of resource poor families in rural areas to enable them become economically independent through on farm and off farm investments and innovations using the locally available resources in their communities. Interventions engaged in here include but not limited to;
- Alternative Village-based enterprises. These are small scale enterprises that are initiated in remote villages to bring about economic development especially among women and unemployed youth in and out of school. These businesses are mostly skills-based such as handicraft making, book making, bee keeping and others.
- Village saving and loaning scheme. Through this initiative, people in remote areas are able to access small sized and affordable credit from self mobilized resources. This means that these people can then engage in delopmental investments such as starting a village businesses or pay for their children’s’ education.
- Gift piglets for empowerment. Women within the villages receive piglets to help them earn additional income. This initiative is also aimed at improving the quality of the soil by using the pig waste as organic fertilizers to improve soil fertility and thus increase farm productivity. Manure can also be used to create bio fuel. This program was established in 2015 by one of our international volunteers and each year the project gets new beneficiaries especially vulnerable families that most need them for income generation. For families that can’t keep pigs, they get local chicken or goats as alternative gift animals.
3. Sustainable Farm Enterprise Development (SFED).
Agriculture is the main employer of the largest population in Uganda and is our only sustainable option for ensuring food security and economic development. However agriculture and many smallholder farmers are challenged with issues like lack of access to affordable credit, marketing, agro-processing and those caused by climate change such as prolonged drought, increasing pests and diseases, low/poor yields and others. With the above challenges, productivity of farms and livelihoods of farmer families are at risk.
- Markets and farm business sustainability. Marketing is a very important factor in the value chain of every farm product. We are contributing to farm business profitability and sustainability through ensuring that smallholder farmers and their farmer organisations access better markets for their farm produce. Through produce bulking and collective marketing, farmers get better prices for their coffee and other produce in competitive markets to maximize incomes and ensure economic sustainability of their farming enterprises. More than 16 small producer groups have been brought together to form 2 farmer cooperatives engaged in active production and marketing of members’ produce at competitive prices.
- KISELO Initiative. The Kkingo Seed Loans (KISELO) initiative was started to improve accessibility of affordable agricultural credit for smallholder farmers who need small loans to invest in their farming businesses. Smallholder farmers are supported with not for profit soft farm enterprise loans to invest more in their smallholder farm enterprises to transform them into larger enterprise units.
4. Water for Lwengo. (W4L)
This initiative is aimed at improving access to safe water and sanitation in water-poor communities in Lwengo district especially among the most needy families and schools. Many pupils often get preventable diseases such as diarrhea from not washing their hands after using the toilets. Families and schools are sensitized and supported to harvest rain water from rooftops using low cost and sustainable technologies. Rain water is harvested and stored in either underground tanks or raised water tanks.
- Bring safe water to Lwengo people. With the help of our past volunteers, we are currently raising funds to construct Rain water harvesting tanks for community schools and families in Kkingo sub county. To donate to our water cause visit our water campaign.
5. Community Self-help housing (CoSH)
In this initiative communities that have the need to improve the living conditions of their people come together to mobilize resources and offer free labour to support their neighbors have decent housing, sanitation facilities and other infrastructure. Through this initiative, our international volunteers and partners have supported individuals and communities to construct houses for the poor, renovate schools, health centers, community wells and others.
“Weeks ago I was living in a very poor conditioned house made from mud and sticks with tiny windows and a leaking roof. But today a brand new house is being handed to me, I can’t thank you enough, may God bless you more!” Naluzzi Yoelia, (73, Malongo)