QSA is one of the projects being implemented by Eco-Agric Uganda with the aim of assisting communities to achieve a greater quality of life through improved food security, improved water quality and reduction in poverty levels. The project intends to improve livelihoods and environmental conservation among rural women in Hoima, Itara village in particular, Busiisi sub-county. In this project, Eco –Agric Uganda is proud to have changed the women’s life in Itara through establishment of Farmer Field School where the group members always have their farming lessons. These FFS also enhanced learning on sustainable beans and maize production. Technology Demonstration sites were also established. These were to act as multiplication sites for planting materials which will serve as a source of disease free planting materials amongst the beneficiaries. Orange Fleshed Sweet Potatoes and local bananas were planted in the TDSs. To enhance performance of the above, Trainings of Good Agronomic Practices for the different crops planted were done. As a way of promoting food security and improving nutrition sustainable crop production of vegetables like Tomatoes, Cabbages and Night shade, Kale, spinach, short and long egg plants and carrots was conducted. Today, every woman feels secure when she is economically strong. To help the women achieve their dream, they were helped to start a Village Savings and Loans Association. The women have been helped to start poultry enterprises which will be a source of manure, food and income.
During the course of the project implementation, the beneficiaries have had an exchange visit to St. Jude family in Masaka where they had a great experience and built their capacity. During the visit, the women had interactions with the hosts which changed their attitudes and believed that things can work out starting from whichever level.
The saving group is proud of having moved one cycle and having shared out their savings in a special way. This has greatly changed their mind-set because the once impossible came to be realized when some were able to start on new projects like piggery, poultry and expansion on cultivatable acreage. In the same way, the women have paid school fees and provided scholastic materials to their children.
Having moved one and a half years of project implementation, Eco Agric. Uganda feels privileged to have grown and expanded whereby new saving groups are coming up, the funding has increased from Quaker Service Australia to Australian government and this is a very great achievement never thought of.
The entire project beneficiaries and project implementers are grateful to QSA and the whole of Australian government for the funding which has highly transformed the People’s lives. Above all, appreciation to Ragna who paid us a visit and indeed we felt that we are cared for by our donors and they also value our work and status.