ACFODE has since 2012-2014 been implementing a three year project entitled “Building and Amplifying Women’s Voices in Political and Economic Development” in the districts of Dokolo, Pader and Namutumba.
The project aimed at ensuring that women are included in the development processes; social, economic and political, in response to the problem of the inability of women in Uganda to qualitatively participate in public policy, decision making and processes of production.
The project has worked towards ensuring that women have the same opportunities as men and have access to agricultural education and extension services tailored to their needs. It also sought to review and advocate for re-orienting government programmes to ensure that the problems that constrain the role of women in food security and the fundamental right to food are addressed.
The project has registered numerous achievements; women groups have initiated village saving and lending Associations (VSLA). The accumulated savings and the credit taken have been used to invest in agriculture enterprises and other small Income generating activities (IGA’S); there’s been increased and improved storage of food (food reserves) for future consumption and adequate seed for subsequent planting seasons, improved consumption of diversified and nutritious food types reducing incidences of malnutrition amongst women and children in households in the sub counties of Nsinze and Magada of Namutumba district. Additionally the gap between women farmers and extension personnel has been bridged-improved access to extension services as a result of closer links created-readily available-are a call away.
Nawansi Group in Nsinze sub county – members teach each other skills in art craft handwork from waste paper. They make mats baskets; water pot covers from banana fibers and other recycle waste like polythene
The project has resulted into empowered women leaders (councillors) who are able to articulate and champion women’s issues in their councils and other forums. It has built their self-confidence and esteem. The pro-activeness of members of Namutumba and Dokolo Women Public administrator’s forum has seen a number of women Administrators promoted to higher offices. This has resulted from the acquired skills in advocacy and lobbying through Dialogues by ACFODE.
Women Farmers of Namutumba District show off some of their products to the District Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) and ACFODE Executive Director
Members of the Namutumba forum for example initiated a Women Administrators’ saving scheme. They have currently raised UGX 700,000/= (Seven Hundred Thousand Shillings). Part of the money has been used to carry out awareness campaigns in schools on the significance of girl child education and buying of sanitary towels for girls.
Speaking at the Exit Meeting, Ms. Yossa Daisy the Project Officer thanked the women farmers, councilors and public administrators for their active participation in the project activities; she especially commended the husbands who had supported their wives’ participation in the project. She assured the beneficiaries that the success stories from the intervention were enough grounds to justify continued funding and that there would also be more male involvement in future interventions.
Human rights & Governance Department