By John Murungi Amooti What begun in earnest has now reached fever pitch, as the campaign to celebrate the 20 years of Research and Community Development by KRC was officially launched on 28th February 2017 at the KRC offices on Plot 28 Mugurusi Road in a colorful function attended by the KRC staff and partners from across the Rwenzori Region.
The half-day launch opened with remarks from the KRC ED, Julius Mwanga who gave a brief background of KRC and the various stages and milestones it has achieved in the last 20 years of operation. He also appealed to members present for overwhelming support since they had been part and partial of KRC since inception The members present included Toro-dev, Ride –Africa, Bantwana, Rwenzori Anti-Corruption Coalition, Kind-Uganda, Fort Portal Regional Referral Hospital among others. The partners pledged total support to the cause, mainly contributions to the marathon and also agreed to be part of the core team that will take lead in preparing for the event. All the proceeds raised from the various charity events lined up during the vent will be extended to support the purchase of Oxygen Concentrator, suction machine and wheel chairs. In 1996 a team of 5 young graduates from Makerere University founded Kabarole Research and Resource Centre (KRC) with an aim of searching for long lasting solutions to the drivers of Poverty in the Rwenzori Region. The team was led by current Fort Portal Municipality MP Alex Ruhunda. Other members included John Rwibasira, Judith Bamuturaki, Sarah Murungi and Tracy Kajumba. KRC that started as a small NGO operating in Kabarole District has over the last 20 years grown to become a vibrant Research, Advocacy and Community Development and has expanded its geographical scope to cover the entire Rwenzori Region and Bunyoro Region and now planning to operate nationally. In the first 5 years of operation, KRC’s major concentration was generating knowledge for the Private Sector, Government and NGOs to enable them develop evidence based programs for the people of the Rwenzori Region. Development dynamics however demanded that KRC becomes an active player in the entire community development chain which prompted KRC to start using its researches and those of other development partners to design development models for Private Sector, Government and NGOs but also advocate for good governance and improvement of service delivery in Agriculture, Health and Education sectors. Currently, KRC ‘s focus is on strengthening its skills in the areas of (1) producing in-depth and insightful research for socio-economic development, packaging information and disseminating it to strategic development partners; (2) facilitating and supporting the process of prioritizing opportunities, selecting partners, and making the decisions that get initiatives successfully started, and (3) facilitating the most effective monitoring and interaction between grass root households, decision-makers and implementers to see development programs through the stages of implementation to successful socio-economic sustainable conclusion. The activities for the week will include;A regional/National marathon on 25th March in partnership with Fort Portal Regional referral Hospital to raise money for the emergency and accident unit. 2. Official Launch of KRC 102 FM Radio in the afternoon of 25th March 2017 at Mugurusi Road Fort Portal 3. Launch a campaign for growing one million trees in the seven districts of Rwenzori region in partnership with NFA and district authorities 4. Launch of the Bio-refinery factory in Boma-Fort Portal that extracts protein for animal feeds from grass 5. Exhibition and at Mayors’ gardens Mugurusi road (behind Stanbic bank) 31st March 2017