Uganda has lived through long periods of war and has been particularly affected by the AIDS epidemic. Today, thousands of people continue to live in precarious conditions in different parts of the country. Agricultural production does not provide enough to feed the whole population. And many families are unable to meet other basic needs.
FH Switzerland has been present in Uganda since 2000.
FH Switzerland is involved in supporting farmer cooperatives. Since 2006, following the war in the north of the country, people have been returning home to start growing crops. Fields are available, but seeds have not been saved or selected for several years. Sometimes know-how has been lost after 20 years of fighting. So, rural communities are trained to improve their production, both in quality and quantity, in order to improve food security. Projects also target agricultural production that is tied to local markets. By selling their produce, farmers increase their income; this lets them address other basic needs and improve their daily living conditions.
Education & health
Since 2000, FH is active in the education and health sectors in the east of the country, in Mbale region. Support for vulnerable families in this area is done in conjunction with local leaders. Children go to school and receive health care. Infrastructure has been enhanced (classrooms, library and water tanks were built). Two health centres have been set up near the schools. In order to prevent illnesses, families are trained in hygiene. Initiatives have been started for credit groups and loans are also assisted.
In the north of the country FH is brings support to young, disfavoured mothers who are former victims of the LRA (Lord's Resistance Army) which was active until 2006. Along with a local partner, FH helps them start up small businesses. They can thus get some income. With the cooperation of a local church, they have people around them and are visited by counsellors and advisers who work for free. Not only do they have a better economic situation, but they are slowly being reintegrated into society. With their new activities, they are no longer stigmatised by other villagers and come out of marginalisation.