The leadership of Myanzi ACE in Mubende District through the use of the FACT methodology has been able to lobby the LG authorities of Mubende to construct an access road for easy transportation of produce from farmers to the ACE stores for bulking
The Uganda cooperative Alliance with the support of its partners has set out to empower farmer’s organizations and producer organizations to seek space on various decision making bodies and effectively influence their directions. Until recently in 2016, UCA’s presence has mainly been at the national level and almost non-existent at the local level. UCA will work to broaden this presence in the four districts of project implementation
UCA uses the FACT methodology to implement result area three of the activity. The FACT methodology focuses on a facilitative and empowerment approach that builds the POs capacity “to do”, “to be” and “to relate” It is this same approach blended with the Inter Action approach and tools that will be used under this initiative The current projects under advocacy target a total of 12 districts which is about 10% of the total districts in the country. In addition to the district limitation, the projects have also targeted POs in a select 24 sub-counties out of a potential 150 sub counties in the 12 districts currently covered by the projects. The initiative with Inter Action, therefore supplements and builds on to the other project interventions by increasing the target number of sub-counties to 32 (i.e.25% increment) at the local level in the same districts.
At the national level, the Inter Action project contributes to already on-going national level dialogues on specific lobby issues like the Amendment Cooperative of the Cooperative laws, re-establishment of the Cooperative Development bank, formation of a parliamentary committee for cooperatives, national level budget advocacy work among others. Issues from the local level will also be consolidated and those that cannot be handled at district level will be escalated to the national level. Policy and position papers will be developed and discussed at national level stakeholder dialogues. UCA as an apex is involved in national level advocacy work for farmers and cooperatives. Earlier this year UCA with other stakeholders presented a petition to parliament on a range of issues. These and other issues inform UCA`s national level policy and advocacy agenda. The activities under the interaction initiative will strengthen UCAs internal capacity and visibility to engage and influence as a partner of choice on agricultural and FOs related policy issues.
The project is managed under the UCA advocacy unit with the direct support of the head of advocacy (Samuel Ssentumbwe) and the capacity development specialist (Kenneth Nkumiro). The Capacity Development Specialist coordinates the overall project strategy while supporting the regional teams. The current staff under the advocacy unit manage the project at field level.
This project supported by Inter Action -The American Council for Voluntary International Action is a response by UCA to empower farmers` organizations with knowledge and skills in lobby and advocacy for an enabling agricultural operating environment. The project contributes to UCAs wider advocacy efforts and directly contributes to Interactions project goal of ensuring farmers’ organizations engage more strategically and effectively in national agricultural development policy debates, advocacy, and partnerships. The project will be implemented in the districts of Kasese, Lira, Bugiri and Mubende in Uganda.
The project recognizes farmers as key stakeholders in the agricultural sector and builds their capacity to position themselves to more effectively influence the decisions by the various decision makers at various levels. Uganda runs a decentralized system of governance where decisions are made at various levels right from the sub-county up to the national level. Farmers have also organized themselves into producer organizations like cooperatives, associations, groups and these operate with different mandates and at different levels (national, regional, district, sub-county, parish and village). Despite this, the farmers have continued to be passive receivers from government and have not played a major role in the design of programs, projects, policies, regulations or laws concerning the discipline from which they earn a living. UCA builds on its past and current work with FOs and cooperatives using the Farmer Advocacy Consultation Tool (FACT) Methodology. Using this tool UCA has been able to work with farmers in Mubende, Kapchorwa, Lira and Kamwenge to profile and facilitate structured engagements and dialogue with decision makers.
The project seeks to build the capacity of the farmers as key stakeholders in the sector to more effectively influence the decisions by the various decision makers at various levels
Farmers in 4 districts ably influencing decisions for a favorable environment for agricultural production and marketing
Outputs and Activities
1 Capacity in lobby advocacy for leaders of farmers organizations strengthened
2 Conduct TOT in advocacy, lobby and facilitating multi stakeholder engagements for 20 National and regional level staff and partners of UCA
3 Conduct training for FO, RPO and PO leaders at district level
4 Conduct one follow up and review events at local and national level
5 Farmers and their representatives have capacity to engage stakeholders and decision makers
6 Facilitate PO activities that identify, profile and document advocacy issues affecting farmers
7 Support POs to develop position papers to facilitate structured engagements between farmers, decision makers and other stakeholders
8 Organize stakeholder dialogues at district level
9 Support higher level PO leaders to organize sub county level dialogues and lobby meetings
10 Compile issues from district level in to a policy paper that inform national level advocacy efforts
11 Organize national level stakeholder dialogues to share and discuss Local issues profiled in the policy paper
12 UCA and its structures are active in platforms for information sharing, networking and collaboration at various levels and are effectively engaging and influencing decision makers using innovative tools
13 Develop a profile of stakeholders in agricultural advocacy work and draw a stakeholder map
14 Improve UCAs visibility through a more dynamic and active website, newsletter, fliers
15 UCA will join civil society budget advocacy platforms to scale up agenda for agricultural policy and financing and use knowledge and evidence to network, collaborate, share information and learn from others in the operating environment
16 Develop UCA communication, advocacy and partnership strategy
17 Develop UCAs capacity to use ICT platforms including the NGO Aid map of Inter Action