Uplifting Ugandan Out of School Youth Though IGA's

by KITOVU MOBILE AIDS ORGANIZATION
Every time we meet we learn a new experience
Every time we meet we learn a new experience

We are grateful to inform you that in the past months we have been doing our best to improve on the IGAs approach. Since our development projects emphasizes self-reliance and sustainability we are moving from providing traditional direct Aid to building capacities of these youths to the level of creating sustainable IGAs through the community involvement approach.

We believe that by working together, we can build healthy honest relationships, in other words, social capital. With productive social capital, our investments of physical capital will not lead to dependency but rather will lead to self-reliance and sustainable results.

Through working together with community leaders, we have been able to build confidence and trust among the youths; this has given them a chance to develop team work and leadership skills. The youths have taken a lead to improve neighborhoods in terms of food security, hygiene and fighting malnutrition, this has created a sense of accomplishment and a spirit of self-reliance among the youths while being of service to the members of the greater community.

The youths are also involved in community service projects like cleaning of rivers, visiting the elderly, through this; they then have a strong sense of ownership and are willing to continue investing their own time and resources to make their projects self-sustaining.

My nursery bed is flourishing
My nursery bed is flourishing
HB attending to his garden
HB attending to his garden

“With perseverance I’m gradually shifting from peasantry to commercial farming. Gone are days when you had to sit down and lament about the unfair world with a wide difference between the rich and the poor. I believe that there is no need to lament; the power to success is within our hands”. HB says.

With the knowledge I acquired from the traings held by Kitovu Mobile I  started growing vegetable using back yard farming system plus coffee as a long term crop that can fetch more money. I have no doubt that it was a wise decision made. Currently I have 1500 coffee plants of which 700(47%) plants have reached maturity stage and my harvest is promising. Just only this season I have been able to harvest 1000kgs of dry coffee.

I’m happy that I have been identified by Kitovu Mobile as a progressive farmer who can teach others using a demostration method  and as a result, I have received an in calf -Friesian dairy cow. I can see a bright future ahead and my colleagues are admiring my status.

"This is our chicken project"
"This is our chicken project"

Youth develop a smile on observing their project progressively develop with tangible results. Over 65 youth who benefited from the piggery and goat project have a reason to smile when they realized that 100% of their piglets where expecting to furrow and pass on the offspring to their colleagues. During their discussion they said; we received six pigs but in the first round we expect at a least an average of 60 piglets. “This is the multiplier effect we wanted”, one of the trainees said”.

Not only have we benefited from the pigs but even our fellow youth who could not manage pigs received goats and chicken. Though goats are not prolific as pigs but we believe we shall also get there when all our friends in the cycle will receive a goat. “The chicken project is easy to manage and we love it”. Said one of the girls

Initially the projects were given to hard working group members who had acquired the skills and could properly manage the projects, but later on even the laggards will benefit.

We appreciate support from our development partners and friends who have tirelessly contributed technical and financial support to this noble cause.

Heifers arriving to the beneficiaries
Heifers arriving to the beneficiaries

Since the commencement of this project, there has been a steady progress and improvement in the livelihoods of the beneficiaries. The group approach has proved efficient supporting the youth through Income Generating Activities. Numerous profound achievements have been witnessed by the beneficiaries, and from the interactions we had with the group leaders, they emphasized this saying “We have been able to gain technical skills from group members as we consult each other for support, promoted skills training among fellow peers. We have also made some savings and accessed credit from our groups and for better marketing of our produce as well as established group coffee nurseries which we sell out and earn some money and sometimes get seedlings and expand on our nursery beds.”To improve on the output generated by the IGAs, Kitovu Mobile has constructed 20 rain water harvesting tanks of 25,000 liters capacity for collecting water runoff for production this is aimed at complimenting the accessibility of water throughout the year by the group members; this has reduced the impact of drought on animal and crop production. To ensure maintenance of the tanks a leader is chosen from the group to be the main over seer of the constructed tank. Besides that, the groups were provided with10 Dairy cattle (in–calf heifers) this was complimented with the construction of zero grazing units to the groups to enhance their farming activities in an integrated approach, the group members were encouraged to access land and latter they were provided with 4000 coffee seedlings as income generating activities. Agricultural training was coupled with reproductive health skills which included sanitary pad making among others. It should be noted that the Group members sit weekly and save an amount ranging from 100-500 UGX. Group projects are undertaken as well as individual income generating projects. Projects include growing of crops such as maize, coffee and beans, horticultural crops like tomatoes, cabbages and green paper. On the side of animals youth keep pigs, poultry and cattle.

25,000 litre capacity tank for irrigation
25,000 litre capacity tank for irrigation
on job making the rack
on job making the rack

Restoring hope is one of the significant achievements in the past period. The youth can see beyond the agricultural support and engage themselves in other productive activities like craft making. On top of the various trainings and support to the out school youth they have gone a step ahead and start making crafts as an extra activity to supplement their income during the off season. 60% of the group members are now making crafts in form of utensil racks which they sell on the market day that comes every Friday of the week. This idea came as a result of training in Micro enterprise development that was identified to be paramount to this category of youth and passed on to them.

Using the savings from the diverse income generating projects they can now meet their day-to-day needs which include supporting their siblings with school requirements, buying supplementary foods and clothes for themselves.

Unlike in the past there is reduced redundancy among the youth and value for time. Thanks to all our supporters in this regard.

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Organization Information

KITOVU MOBILE AIDS ORGANIZATION

Location: MASAKA, SOUTHERN - Uganda
Website: http:/​/​www.kitovumobile.org
Project Leader:
Mallory Browne
Kitovu Mobile Intern
Masaka, Uganda