UCOBAC to build community resilience to effects of climate change
The impacts of climate change and variability have been and are still detrimental to Uganda’s economy and social development. Uganda has witnessed various natural and human-induced disasters in form of
landslides, floods, drought, famine, earthquakes, lightening strikes, pests and disease outbreaks. These have dealt significant blows to the population which can no longer adequately reap from agriculture and natural
resources such as land and water hence food insecurity. Many have been left with no shelter or property due to floods and landslides while some have lost lives, families and livestock due to hunger and disease.
Government developed the National Preparedness Policy as an attempt to ensure localization of global instruments such as the post 2015 - Sendai framework for Disaster Risk Reduction and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) particularly SDG 13 (Climate Action) among others. However, there is a disparity between policy and practice leaving Ugandans vulnerable to the impact of climate change. UCOBAC in partnership with Huairou Commission are implementing a SIDA funded Community Resilience Development project in Bugiri district. Through the project, grassroots women have organized to take lead in
building their community’s resilience to effects of climate change. In their groups, the women undertook a risk mapping exercise through which they mapped drought as the highest impact of Climate Change in their
communities. They identified that due to climate change, there are prolonged periods of drought, which have affected (i) food productivity leading to food insecurity and their (i) livelihoods, leading to high poverty.
The grassroots groups thus agreed to adopt “Climate Smart Agri business” to promote food security and boost their livelihoods (income generation). The groups were provided with technical training in climate smart agriculture. In addition to the capacity building process, they were provided with drought resistant inputs including cassava, potato vines and banana suckers to enable them grow crops throughout the seasons. The crops will provide food and surplus will be sold off to generate income. To sustain this process, grassroots women have organised in Village Saving and Loans Associations (VSLAs). Through the groups, the women are able to save the income generated and later access their savings to boost their agri businesses. Through the VSLAs, the groups have access to a revolving in-kind loan, which is a local goat.