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Help the Crying Voices (HCV) a Non-Governmental Organization which is currently operating in Sheema District, is implementing a two year project entitled “Harnessing Citizens Power and Voice project” in three sub counties of Kitagata, Shuuku, and Rugarama. It is implementing this project in partnership with WACSOF with funds from DGF.

Since we started implementing this project in 2013, a number of activities have been done which include; civic learning clinics, citizens- leaders debates/parliaments, and trainings. A long side sensitizing citizens their civic roles, rights and responsibilities, HCV initiated a new strategy of sensitizing them new approaches of development at house hold level which included increasing house hold income through Agriculture. This is being piloted in Kitagata Sub County only

As result, citizens welcomed the strategy calling it a blessing from God. To sustain this idea, HCV assembled these citizens into smaller community groups/farmer groups depending on their villages. HCV helped them to form committees, make constitutions, helped them to register with Sheema District Local Gov’t, and trained them in group dynamics among many others. As a result, a total of 26 farmer groups/community groups have been formed and trained by HCV, out of 26 groups, 20 are registered with District, NAADS and the remaining are in the process of registration. Also out of 26 groups, 07groups have joined WACSOF and they attended AGM in Rubirizi District

These farmers in groups have been for the last year involved in Agriculture, art and craft, monthly savings, and other income generating activities. Though many challenges ranging from low prices, climate changes, high cost of inputs, poor quality products and disease are affecting their production. To have a collective voice to address these challenges, the 26 groups have agreed and formed one joint group called Kitagata Mixed Farmers Cooperative Society Ltd. And they are also registered with Ministry of trade and Cooperatives number P.S/4339RS

After formation of Kitagata Mixed Farmers Cooperative Society Ltd, many development partners got interested in working with them like; Numa Feeds Ltd Kabwohe which gives them free inputs (fertilizer, seeds and spraying chemicals), harvesting equipment’s, train them in value addition and provides them with direct market of their produce. Other partners include CIAT (Center for Tropical Agriculture- Kenya), CEDO Rakia, KABIP-Kitagata, NARO-Mbarara, DFCU- Ishaka

So far citizens in Kitagata Sub County have increased their incomes through their new cooperative formed. This has made easy to carry out other remaining activities.
HCV is extending this idea in two sub counties of Rugarama and Shuuku before the project ends. It has so far registered Rugarama Bodada Association
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An educated, enlightened & informed population is one of the surest ways of promoting the health of a democracy
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As school terms close and children go back home for holidays, we need to reflect alot on the role of parents in the learning of children.

This is the right time for us as citizens to sit with our children and reflect on what happened in school throughout the entire school term.

Let us begin the conversation.


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The quality of learning in Ugandan schools has tremendously gone down over time. The 2013 Primary Leaving Exams and Uganda Certificate of Education (UCE) results exposed the failure at different levels of learning and education management in Uganda. Primary education for example is one of those services that was decentralized and left to Local Governments.

Funding to Local Governments has generally gone down over time. Financial year 2014/15 will see a reduction in funding to Primary Schools. This is very bad situation well knowing that learning already is not getting any better. Government must be aware that quality learning can only be achieved if you provided sufficient funding to education programmes/policies.

Teachers welfare has been a very question for sometime now. Many teachers are demotivated to teach and produce better learning outcomes. They spend very little time in classes and more time doing personal work to earn some extra income to deal with their problems. Many teachers today are chocking on loans. We should know that loans/indebtedness adversely affects teachers effectiveness and reduces their morale.

Citizens participation remains a challenge. Many parents are not concerned about the learning of their children. Many have resigned and just relegated the role of educating their children to government yet it is not showing stewardship in fully taking up its role.

So, the question of learning must not only be left to one group or the other. Every one has a responsibility to ensure that our children are learning.

In our Yega Agenda, we are trying to make sure that each and every stakeholder is playing their role. Its not only about going to school, learning must be seen to be taking place.

It's all our responsibility.

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