The past half of 2021 was a laborious time for KRC where new partnership successes were achieved. We are glad to introduce to you our new strategic partnerships with new development partners
Young Africa Works; Markets for Youth Program
In April 2021, KRC began working with GOAL Uganda on an innovative program entitled Young Africa Works; Markets for Youth Program. For four years, KRC will be building capacity of young people aged between 15-35 years to work innovatively and collectively to increase their influencing power in the agricultural market system. The program’s overall goal is to facilitate market systems change that enables 4,875 young people to access and engage in dignified and fulfilling work. The program will be implemented in 7 districts of Kabarole, Fort Portal City, Kasese, Kyegegwa, Kikuube, Kamwenge and Hoima.
The program is a contribution to a national response to the youth bulge and high levels of unemployment. More than 75% of Uganda’s population is below the age of 30, with the country having one of the highest youth unemployment rates at 13.3% and having the highest number of youths actively looking for a job as a percentage of the labour force in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The Development Response to Displacement Impact Project (DRDIP)
KRC is partnering with the Office of Prime Minister to implement DRDIP project in refugee hosting Districts of Kamwenge, Kyegegwa, Isingiro, Hoima and Kikuube in Western Uganda. The project overall objective is to improve access to basic social services, expand economic opportunities and enhance environment management in the refugee hosting districts. DRDIP is a strategic partnership with the Government of Uganda and shall focus on sustainable environment and natural resources management to reduce untenable exploitation of natural resources, risks mitigation and other challenges faced by host and refugee communities. KRC will work alongside two private sector entities (TrautBuck Energy and Cook and Save Consults LTD) to strengthen community projects for effective and efficient service delivery in the 6 refugee hosting districts. KRC will ensure that vulnerable persons including women and youth, People of Concern (POCs), Persons with Special needs (PSNs) and people are integrated in the community projects and their interests being taken care of. KRC and its partners will be involved in areas of briquette technologies, and efficient energy cook stoves.
According to UBOS (2014), 94.1 % of the households in Uganda depend of wood fuel (71.2% fire wood and 22.9% charcoal) and this is estimated to cause about 20,000 deaths per year.
The high demand for fuel wood has led to high levels of deforestation in the country. Uganda already faces pressure on its forest resources due to deforestation with an estimated annual loss of 4%- the highest in the world. High refugee population escalate deforestation especially in refugee settlements and their hosting districts since the refugees are highly dependent on forest resources for their cooking and construction needs. Uganda is hosting 1,252,664 refugees (OPM, 2019) making it the largest hosting country in Africa and second in the world (UNHCR, 2018).
KRC is partnering with GRASSA to establish a small biorefinery that will produce a range of high value-added bio-based products, including animal feeds, fertilizers, and biofuels.
The project is envisaged to improve the environmental, economic, and social performance of agri-food systems. In context, it is projected that the Ugandan population will to grow from 39 million today to about 100 million in 2050, and will consume much more protein in the future, due to an expected rise in the standard of living.
The Biorefinery will be hosted at KRC Boma premises, strategically to serve the Tooro Sub Region which ranks highest in the levels of malnutrition in Uganda. Stunting amongst children below 5 accounts 40.6% in Tooro Sub Region and almost one-third of children under 5 years in Uganda are stunted.
This dire situation is attributed to low levels of dietary diversity that includes absence of milk, meat and eggs. The bio refinery products will therefore contribute to increased dietary diversity and nutrition. Largely, Uganda is lacking sufficient animal feed, to meet the needs of the livestock, poultry, and fish sectors.
The pilot phase of the biorefinery will show the economic and sustainable feasibility of the integrated production chain, starting with growing crops on the field, harvesting, transporting to the production plant that processes the crop into three products (press cake, protein concentrate & protein whey). The product outputs will be fed to animals while the manure will be recycled to the agricultural fields. Later in the project, a high-quality protein product will be produced that is suitable for human consumption.
The biorefinery project will practically reduce the cost of feeds and increase returns on investment by poultry and livestock farmers. It will also increase economic options within the feed value chain thus creating opportunities for growth in rural employment, green entrepreneurship and the green economy.