After many months of construction and training, Mbaata Farmers’ Enterprise Centre is making a huge amount of headway, with the building structure now being complete. It is hard to believe that last time we reported, Mbaata was a construction site. The last quarter has been a whirlwind of progress in Mbaata, but we need your donations to keep this progress moving!
Following four days of intensive business training carried out by two facilitators selected from the community, several small businesses have started operation this week. So far, a salon, welding business, cassava milling service and juicing shop have been set up within the FEC. These businesses will be run by members of the community, using solar power from the anchor load installed on site. This will enable the business owners to generate income and increase the value of the crops that they produce- all using clean energy from the Ugandan sun!
In addition to these, we still need funding for more services within the centre in order for more community members to set up businesses and generate a sustainable income. We are still in the process of setting up coffee processing, the Farmer’s Innovation Centre (FIC) and the cold store, all of which will provide a host of opportunities for the community in Mbaata.
Here is a bit more information about these services…
- The coffee processing will create jobs for multiple members of the community, and increase the value of the coffee, meaning that members of the community will be able to gain more profit, as well as preserving the coffee plant for longer to avoid post-harvest loss.
- The Farmer’s Innovation Centre provides information and training for local farmers, in order for them to learn about best farming practices and gain access to ICT facilities and the internet.
- The cold store is completed and will soon be used to store produce from the community, in order to increase the shelf-life of produce from community farmers and reduce post-harvest food loss.
The addition of these services are essential in order for the FEC to be self-sustaining and as beneficial to the wider community as possible.
In other news, our Ugandan partners Kiima Foods hosted the resident district commissioner and a team from the Ministry of Agriculture at the site in Mbaata, meaning that the local government is involved and shares the same vision for the potential of this project. As a result of Kiima's hard work, the government started working on the road to Mbaata, which is great news and will have such an incredible impact on the lives of farmers there, who are now able to transport goods up and down the mountain with ease. Access is a significant problem for many remote farming communities, so this is fantastic progress and future success of the FEC in Mbaata.
If you want to continue to support this project, please share this report link on your social media channels and within your network. Your donations will be hugely impactful, through helping the community in Mbaata keep their produce fresh for longer, become more resilient to climate change and generate higher profits.
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The road up to Mbaata after some repairs
Capacity building workshop delivered by community
A stunning solar array