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Economically empower women in rural Uganda

by Foundation for Inclusive Community Help (FICH)
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Economically empower women in rural Uganda
Women Baking
Women Baking

We hope you are keeping safe and staying home during this COVID-19 Pandemic. We are safe and some staff continues to work remotely and others are traveling in the field while considering health guidelines and directives.

We know the COVID-19 pandemic has affected us all in different ways. We’re already all dealing with the effects at workplace, home and in our communities. One of the most hit areas is our finances. As an organization, we had started the year with a lot of zeal and different inspirations to continue supporting women under Karacel Bakery. We have pleasure for your donation which has added a huge impact in our communities and increased women economic empowerment. We would like to thank you in a special way for your generosity and support toward the most and furthest women left behind.

We want to update you with what we are doing at this time of COVID-19 lockdown.

This pandemic is providing us opportunity to keep rethinking on our program design, and made us to create staff capacity development programs to help staff discover and increase knowledge to perform their roles with more competencies in supporting women and their siblings. The staff capacity development program is keeping Karacel Bakery staff up to date with current thinking, enhancing staff knowledge, skills and expertise, making staff compare and share information and data on how we could navigate working challenges during this lockdown and the COVID-19 effects.

We have also decided to use this time of COVID-19 pandemic to invest in setting up knowledge hub center in the community to allow promotion and facilitation of women’s learnings, information and data sharing, networking with peers and professionals, thoughtful leaders’ discussions for current thinking to build the strong foundation for young generations in our communities. We’re also designing this center to provide a loving, comfortable, safe and nurturing environment where women and young people are stimulated and encouraged to develop social, physical and emotional skills to curve the current and post effects of COVID-19. The knowledge hub center will also serve for capacity development programs for emerging young leaders, provide space for inspiration and emerging leaders to meet and discuss mutual interest to influence social norms, policies and programs with the main aim of addressing current and post COVID-19 effects and inequalities that still exist in communities as a result of civil war in northern Uganda for over 20 years. This will be a center to support our social inclusion program and the big market for Karacel Bakery products.

We have started to put efforts and gathering resources to set up infrastructures to ensure safe and conducive environment for learning and access of information as a way to build strong foundation for the future of marginalized young women and children while providing space and enhancing usage of technology for those women and children furthest left behind.

Currently, we’re closely working with COVID-19 taskforce committee to support and ensuring women and children are safe during this time.

Thank you very much and will continue providing you with more updates. 

#StaySafe, #StayHome

Baking
Baking

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Baking
Baking

Karacel Bakery & Training Center most important goals is program sustainability and strong positive outcomes for our women. Through Karacel nearest strategy of moving Bakery to a larger town “Lira”, providing 40% of profits to programs for women and girls managed by FICH and providing business training opportunity are great opportunities to create more impact and business expansion. We are continuing to perfect and expand our product offerings to work towards the program’s sustainability. The unique capability of revenue generation along with managing costs, building leadership from within, and growing Karacel Bakery customers including Small and Medium Entrepreneurs participation will ensure our financial sustainability and greater overall impact of the program.

Community partnership of Karacel has been essential and diverse since its inception. Of recent, our Director of Programs Ms. Haley met with different stakeholders in London, New York and Texas to share with them Karacel Bakery unique strategy which buys soya beans from rural women farmers and then employs women to make soya flour and bake soya cakes/bread. The strategy helps to improve household incomes while providing women with essential job skills. The products (soya flour, cake, and bread) are also beneficial to the community. Soya flour is high in protein and an essential measure in preventing child malnutrition. By making these products available to the local community, we are providing access to more nutritional food for families. Finally, 40% of the profits from Karacel Bakery are invested in girls and women through development programs managed by FICH. The remaining 60% of the profits are reinvested back into the business and the development of its employees.

The idea that a program like Karacel Bakery & Training Center has true social relevance and could help individuals implement change in themselves. We are partnering with community of generous individuals who are touched and want to see change in the most vulnerable rural women trapped with low income, holding high family responsibilities and with low or no formal education and skills to start their own businesses because of being the poorest of the poor and oppressed due to gender inequality.

Our public exposure locally and internationally made by Director of Programs with assistance of oversea board members has allowed Karacel Bakery and Training Center to find friendship, encouragement, mentorship, and a pathway to sustainability.

In the next couple of months, we’re putting efforts to achieve our goals such as increasing number of ambassadors, volunteers, In-kind support and financial donations to ensure Karacel Bakery & Training Center is fully functional with all components to create desired impacts.

We’re gratefully and very humbled with your support and again ask you to continue lending your help to ensure we meet all Karacel Bakery’s targets.

Thank you to our Donors, Friends and Mentors for your generosities!
Karacel Bread
Karacel Bread

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New strategy
New strategy

The past few months have been a time of transformation. The team has been evaluating the WEB Soya business strategy and talking to the WEB Soya women to uncover any gaps in the system. Through this process, we have learned that in order to grow and increase our impact, we must adapt. After much deliberation and many skype calls, we have finally finalized the new strategy that will carry us forward. I would like to introduce you to: Karacel Bakery.

Let's go over the key changes that were made:

1. Name: We have changed he name of the business from WEB Soya to Karacel Bakery. Karacel [kar-ah-chel] means "all together" or "to bring people together" in the local language (Lango). We chose this name because we feel that it embodies the soul of this social enterprise that we can all work together to make an impact on our community and the world.

2. Move bakery to large town: Previously, all of the soya flour and cake production was done in a small, rural community called Alidi. From our experience, we learned that our primary market is a larger town about 45 minutes away called Lira. Traveling to and from Lira was straining our sales team and affecting the quality of the cakes because many were damaged in transit. We have decided to move the bakery arm to Lira to overcome the challenges and boost our sales. However, we will keep the soya flour production in Alidi so that the local community does not lose any benefit from the business.

3. 40% profits to programs for women and girls: Previously, the business model allocated 40% of profits into a revolving loan fund for women. The loan fund was managed by a savings and credit cooperative (SACCO) so that the business did not have to hire a credit officer. However, we have realized that this strategy as inefficient because women had to pay upfront costs in order to simply join the SACCO. Furthermore, we lost control over the fund and were unable to accurately track where the money was going. In order to solve this issue, we have decided to put 40% of the profits from Karacel Bakery into programs for women and girls managed by FICH, specifically FICH's program for vulnerable secondary school girls. This method is more effiicient because FICH already has the capacity to carry out these programs and it makes the programs more self-sustainable rather than reliant on donationd or grants.

4. Business training: Due to the decision to more the bakery to Lira, the team decided this would a great opportunity to offer business training to local business owners using the bakery as a "role model business." Based on a survey of small business owners in Lira, 60% do not understand their financial records and many do not keep financial records at all. We believe that Karacel Bakery could mentor these business owners so that as the bakery succeeds, so does the local community.

 

We are very excited for all that is coming. We believe that these changes will help us to make a sustainable impact on women and the community. As always, thank you for your continued support!

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The past few months have taught the WEB Soya team a lot. We have learned how to be better team members, the importance of paying attention to the details, and most importantly, that starting a business is hard work. Through all this learning we are also evolving. We are evolving into something bigger and better than what we are now; a social enterprise that can do more, help more, and grow more. 

For the moment, we are taking some time to reflect on how WEB Soya can reach its full potential. We have been conducting one-on-one interviews with our members to get feedback. We are sending three women to an internship at Ntake Bakery, the largest commercial bakery in Uganda. And, there is a wealth of data from these past 7 months that needs to be analyzed thoroughly. Once this process is complete, the team will announce a strategy to carry the organization through the next few years. All changes will help WEB Soya to further its mission to economically empower rural women and their communities through sustainable, grass-roots business. 

Change can be tough but we are excited for what will come! We believe in WEB Soya and our members. We want to help WEB Soya reach its full potential. And, we want to see our community thrive.

With this, we would like to thank you for your continued support. If there is any feedback you would like to share with the WEB Soya team, please do not hesitate to reach out. 

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Over the past few months the women at WEB Soya have been working hard to make this program a success. As with any project or business, there have been many unexpected challenges along the way. However, we never let anything stop us from reaching our goal and instead have learned a lot in the process. Below is a short list of all the innovations and things we have accomplished after being faced with a challenge.

  • Development of new sales route and hiring of new sales agent
  • Promotion of party cakes at local churches through WEB Soya movie nights
  • Adjustment of cake sizing and ingredients
  • Improvement in financial management and inventory analysis
  • Reconstruction of two ovens in order to improve efficiency
  • Election of team leaders 
  • Learning to cultivate a positive attitude 
  • Creating a strong will to succeed

We look forward to 2019 and have high hopes that it will be an impactful year not only for the women of WEB Soya, but the entire community of Alidi as well. 

Check out our new website at www.websoya.com

Thank you for your continued support. Happy holidays and Happy new year to all! 

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Organization Information

Foundation for Inclusive Community Help (FICH)

Location: KAMPALA, Oyam - Uganda
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @fichuganda.org
Project Leader:
Emmy Zoomlamai Okello
KAMPALA, Oyam Uganda
$5,899 raised of $142,000 goal
 
42 donations
$136,101 to go
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