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IYD: Lives of Over 100 Teenage Mothers Changed Through Climate Change Urban Farming, Hands-on Skills

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A Demotrstion Farm of HADE and NAC found in Kamwanyi village, Luzira Portbell in Nakawa Division

When President Museveni announced the first March 18, 2020, countrywide lockdown to contain the spread of covid-19, Sarah Atieno (not real name) who was a student by then, didn’t know that she will in a period of two years become a mother.

A year later, Atieno was a single mother, helpless in extreme suffering.

“My parents became bitter, I was chased away from home leaving my life in a miserable state,”

Atieno is among the over 100 teenage mothers (majority from lockdown pregnancies) who have benefitted from the Climate Change Urban farming and Hands-on Training, conducted by Network for Active Citizens (NAC) in partnership with Holistic Actions for Development and Empowerment (HADE).

One of the beneficiaries of the project

Located at Kamwanyi village, Luzira-PortBell in Nakawa Division, the project which started in 2020 during lockdown has in a span of fewer than 2 years benefited over 200 youths, the majority being teenage mothers.

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“We work with young people doing different things such as urban farming, as we mitigate the effects of climate change, we also train them on how to use other things like papers to make baskets, among others,” Ronah Ahumuza, the Team leader of HADE said in an interview.

Ronah Ahumuza, the Team leader of HADE speaking to journalists during the interview

For urban farming, for example, Ahumuza said that one only needs fertile soil, a broken bucket, or a polythene bag to start, especially in vegetable farming.

“Each Cavera you see here we sell at Shs20,000 and the farmer takes free seeds as well,” she said

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At the facility, toured by DaParrot, Ahumuza showed us some of the other products being made from there, in addition to the demonstration farm.

These included; leather shoes which cost between Shs15000 and Shs50,000, House Plans training, environmentally friendly baskets, and bottles among others.

Some of the shoes being made from the facility cost between Shs15000 and Shs50,000

“We prioritize environment conservation in whatever we do that is why you see even the baskets are made in old newspapers and magazines,” she said

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Call for Action on Climate Change

During a community youth parliament held at Kamwanyi Zone at Portbell in Nakawa on Tuesday, youths, led by Ahumuza and others called upon the government t increase funding for Climate Change.

Some of the youth who attended the community youth Parliament yesterday

These wondered why the funding for Climate Change Action is still minor yet it has started biting.

“Climate Change is a critical sector that requires enough budget funding, we still wonder why I have not got enough attention yet we are already seeing the negative impacts biting,” Ahumuza said

Ahumuza says Climate change funding should be placed among the major priorities since it’s an important sector that affects all the people.

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“When it comes to flooding, drought, we are all affected so we call upon the government to intervene especially when it comes to budget allocations,” she said

Citing Mbale Floods that claimed 29 lives last week, Miria Balungi the Advocacy Associate of the Network for Active Citizens (NAC) said it’s high time for the government to start prioritizing funding of Climate Change mitigation and adaptation measures since it is now biting.

Miria Balungi the Advocacy Associate of the Network for Active Citizens (NAC)
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“We emplore the lawmakers to ensure that policies to do with Climate Change including budgets being made in Parliament have a bigger portion for Climate Change because effects like those seen in Mbale can affect the young people,” she said

The Community Parliament was organized by NAC in partnership with Dream Town and aimed at implementing the Ghetto Go Green project in communities.

It was organized under the theme: Intergenerational Solidarity, leaving no one behind, ahead of the world international youth day that shall be observed on Friday, August 12.

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