The real solution to rural poverty in Uganda…….. depends on the ability of people to transform locally available resources and achieve their dreams. There is power in local resources. PAG has achieved a lot by encouraging people to use what is available at their disposal and address their needs. Sustainable solution to rural poverty is within the people and their locality. External support (aid) only becomes relevant in providing skills to the target community and to a small extent kick-start inputs. PAG promotes the social development philosophy that empowers local people to believe in themselves and what they have. Our emphasis is on skills development and helping the target people develop positive attitude about themselves and what they can achieve. This has contributed to significant success stories in thousands of households and millions of people that PAG is working with.
“I can afford to smile because now I take care of my needs…………” that is a common statement in thousands of households and millions of people that PAG is working with in Uganda. PAG has empowered individuals and households by providing skills and kick-start inputs. Significant percentage of our target households can now confidently say they have achieved sustainable livelihood or almost realizing this goal. Citrus production is one of the enterprises that PAG focuses on to boost the household income and improves nutrition. The citrus enterprise provides multiple benefits and among that is environmental restoration. This is also taken as an adaptation to climate change since it diversifies the sources of income for the household. This is just one of the several Small and Micro Enterprises that PAG is engaging on to improve the standard of living in target households.
PAG has made significant achievement in guiding youth to make the right choices and engage in socio-economic transformation…….. This effort is driven by the great need to address the issue of unemployment of youth. According to the Africa Development Indicators, unemployed young people, between the ages of 15 to 24, were recorded at 83% in Uganda. The report further states that Uganda’s population also has the highest dependency ratio in Africa- registered at 1:1. (Dependency ratio is the ratio of people younger than 15 or older than 64 to the working population).
PAG has access to millions of youth in Uganda who are faithful members in the 5000 PAG churches. Several youth groups have been formed and equipped with
48 year-old Opolot John Peter is married with 6 children.
Before the armed rebellion especially by Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), Peter says that life was good. “We were rich. We had cattle, goats and sheep. Educating children was very easy; one cow would pay for two terms. Food was abundant and I was able to provide and meet all the needs in my family and at the same time work as a pastor. My family was in a good state. In just a short while, all that we held dearly was gone, and suddenly, we were made very poor
Real socio-economic transformation involves paradigm shift in mind-set from being at the "receiving end" of life to the "giving end". PAG has achieved significant socio-economic empowerment of thousands of households and millions of individuals across Uganda. The target households have enough food to eat, sell for family development and even give out with a smile.
Our partnership has put a smile in the faces of millions of people across Uganda. In the above photo Rev Franco Onaga the Vice Chairperson of PAG National Development Board celebrates with the Board Chairperson of TEARFund UK Clive Marther and his wife Anne. This was during the visit to some of the communities that we work with in Uganda. PAG has developed strong partnership with several organizations and individuals and this has helped us reach out to millions of people in need. The fruits of our partnership are evident in positive impact created in the community.
The Participatory Evaluation Process (PEP) is a powerful model for social transformational development. PAG adopted PEP model in 2004, and has since then been using it when working with communities to identify local and sustainable solutions to their challenges. Recent evaluations of this program have indicated significant positive impact in transforming individuals, families and communities. The pivot to this transformation is success in building strong relationship in families and communities. Some of the highlights of the recent evaluations include:
Uganda is generally semi arid and has experienced severe decline in water sources over the past few decades. This has been worsened by frequent and prolonged droughts resulting from climate change. Clean water sources are now inadequate as many spring wells continue to dry up. However, the human population continues to increase thus making available clean water insufficient for the community. Human beings end up sharing spring wells with cattle and other animals thus increasing contamination of water. This has resulted to increased incidence of waterborne diseases (typhoid, diarrhea, cough, skin rushes ……) and death.
However, partnership between PAG and Emergency Relief and Development Overseas through its “LIFE JUST ADD WATER” initiative has brought a ray of hope to the thirsty communities in Uganda
Pentecostal Assemblies of God-Uganda Social Development Services (PAG SDS) works in partnership with Emergency Relief and Development Overseas and the Canadian Food Grains Bank to address livelihood and socio-economic issues in the community
The power of believing in small things and self reliance
In Exodus 4:2; God asked Moses; “what are you holding?” “A stick,” He answered. God used it to perform all the miracles that delivered the Israelites from slavery.
In Mathew 14:17, when Jesus asked His disciples to feed the crowd they replied; “All we have here are five loaves and two fish.” From their statement, the bread and fish was not even enough for them. How was it going to feed the whole crowd? But after Jesus gave thanks to God, 5000 men, women and children were all fed to satisfaction and 12 baskets remained. From Here we learned that, to God, nothing is too small. He can use anything to do great things. He used a stick to do miraculous things in Egypt and delivered the Israelites. Jesus gives thanks to God for the five loaves of bread and two fish and it feeds a crowd.
Akujo Hellen; a mother of one daughter whom she bore to her husband Mr. Kato Johnson admits having heard about this scripture but had never thought that it could be applied to her situation. For the thirty three (33) years they have been married, life has been the same year in-year out. Agriculture has been their source of everything; food and some little money to buy a few basic needs.
In 2004 when Participatory Evaluation Process (PEP) started in Akoboi PAG- Soroti district, Hellen decided to attend the trainings. “I discovered it was something good