Project name: Health, Education and Livelihoods
Location: Mayuge District, Eastern Uganda
Date: 2014 – Present Day
Supported by: UKAID (2014-2017), donations and fundraising (2017-present)
Project Goal: Providing life skills, financial literacy and business enterprise skills to around 2000 disadvantaged women and girls
The Project: Through regular group sessions, women are provided with basic finance and business skills to set up and run businesses (either individually or as part of a co-operative), and a means to safely and regularly save with others. They are also eligible for loans for business development or expansion, and some women have also been provided with goat kids from our goat herd for breeding or selling. As with all our programmes, participants are also taught about sexual and reproductive health and related issues, such as domestic abuse.
Members of the Act4Africa Uganda team visit groups regularly to provide on-going support to the women and to regularly reinforce the benefits of saving.
The Outcome: Women have gained economic independence and increased respect and status in their communities and homes as a result of this programme, with many developing and growing thriving businesses from scratch. These businesses boost the local economy, progress which is further enhanced by women in the groups encouraging others to save and set up their own enterprises.
Project name: Grains for Growth
Location: Mayuge District, Eastern Uganda
Supported by: Souter Trust
Project Goal: Providing agricultural training and silos to 35 households to enable food security.
The Project: In conjunction with the World Food Programme, providing silos for grain storage, plus accompanying training and support. You can read more about this project here.
The Outcome: 35 households are provided with food security, reducing the risk of malnutrition and loss of income.
Location: Kasese, Western Uganda
Supported by: Global Giving Community Fund
Project Goal: To improve life chances and livelihoods for 300 adolescent mothers and their children
The Need: Kasese district has an extremely high rate of teenage pregnancy (31%), due in part to rapes resulting from cross-border conflict with the Democratic Republic of Congo. It also has a very low rate of girls completing secondary school (2.2% according to the 2002 census).
The Project: 300 adolescent mothers received weekly training from Act4Africa’s experienced project team in sexual and reproductive health rights, HIV prevention & life skills training. Participants’ self-confidence and entrepreneurship was also encouraged and developed.
The Outcome: The programme resulted in a reduction in adolescent mothers becoming sex workers and engaging in risky sexual behaviour. The mothers became socially and emotionally empowered with improved livelihood opportunities and life chances for themselves and their children.
In addition, the training offered in financial literature and saving helped shape the young mothers into financially independent individuals, living healthier, more positive lives, better able to tackle poverty-related challenges. As a result, they became less isolated, more confident, and more independent.
Project location: Malawi
Project dates: 2014-17
Supported by: Souter Trust and Soroptimist International Manchester
Project Goals: To offer holistic support for 1500 out-of-school adolescent girls and their communities.
The Need: Girls who are not in education are at high risk of economic instability and associated poverty and harm.
The Project: 1500 out-of-school adolescent girls and young women, as well as 750 men and women in their communities received HIV-prevention training, business enterprise coaching and life-skills classes.
20 Community Mentors were also trained to set up local women’s savings groups in their village.
The Outcome: Over 2000 individuals received reliable, supportive training and education, and were engaged in discussions about the gender equality issues they face.
Local women’s saving groups successfully begun, assisted by Act4Africa staff, enabling group saving, loan applications and economic empowerment.
Project location: Kasese, Uganda
Project dates: 2012 – 2016
Supported by: The Big Lottery Fund
Project Goals: To reduce the spread and effects of HIV/AIDS in Uganda
The Need: Sub-Saharan Africa has some of the highest rates of HIV/AIDS in the world
The Project: Using interactive teaching and communication programmes based on Theatre for Development techniques to educate about HIV and sexual health, as well as mobile house-to-house HIV testing and counselling, this project reached around 300,000 people in Western Uganda.
The Outcome: This ambitious project improved access to health education for vulnerable target groups, improved knowledge of the risk of HIV infection, promoted the human and sexual rights of women, challenged gender inequality, reduced the stigmatisation of people living with HIV/AIDS and those with disabilities, provided 300 teachers, health workers and traditional herbalists with training opportunities, and trained 300 community-based trainers and 300 school-based peer educators.
Project location: Tanzania
Project dates: 2012 – 2014
Supported by: Eleanor Rathbone Trust plus supporter donations
Project Goals: Educating young adolescents around HIV prevention and gender-equality
The Project: Providing interactive training sessions for school-children aged 9 to 14 years, discussing HIV prevention, gender equality and gender respect.
The Outcome: Children were equipped with skills to look after their future health and relationships. In addition, two Peer Educators were trained at each participating schools, enabling on-going ‘Life Club’ drama groups to serve as interactive discussion forums for health/gender education and support.
Project location: Uganda
Project dates: 2010 – 2012
Project supported by: USAid
Project Goal: To enable the young people in the Mayuge District of Uganda to take full control of their lives through improved access to sexual and reproductive health services and information.
The Outcome: Young people and adult community members have better access to antenatal care, increasing the rate of safe live births. They also have better information and care regarding Sexually Transmitted Infections, condom distribution, teenage pregnancy, contraceptive use and prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV.