Every January, 40 precious young people enter the gates of Kira Farm, an innovative training centre set in 22-acres of fertile Ugandan land.
When the new trainees arrive they are full of hope and trepidation. Some have lost parents to HIV, others have been forced to fight as child soldiers - all have grown up in poverty.
While they might be hungry and poor, they need more than regular meals and money in their pocket; they need the belief that they can change their lives and the vision of what a better future could be. It's a life-changing year for everyone involved.
The one year programme focuses on three main areas:
* Conservation Farming
* Vocational Training
* Holistic Life Skills
Although many young people in Uganda have access to fertile land, they often live off just one meal a day because no one has taught them how to farm effectively due to their parents’ generation being wiped out by conflict and HIV. Ironically vast areas of Uganda which lie barren could yield abundant crops.
Kira trainees learn conservation farming techniques which are environmentally friendly and equip graduates with the skills to feed themselves, and their extended families, three meals a day. They are also able to grow extra crops to sell and use the spare income to pay for their children to go to school and purchase essential items such as soap and salt. Find out more about our farming methods.
“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”
Uganda has both the youngest population in the world and the highest rates of youth unemployment. The solution? Young people setting up small businesses. During the 12 month residential course students learn vocational skills alongside farming methods. They can choose to focus on:
When they complete their course the trainees can acquire the tools they need (eg a sewing machine, carpentry kit...), via micro-finance, to set themselves up in business. The same applies for seeds and farming equipment.
Young people in Uganda are full of potential, energy and talent, but they are trapped in a cycle of poverty. At Kira we aim to change the mindset of the trainees and help them see what they can do for themselves.
We believe in holistic social transformation and throughout the year the trainees complete courses in character development, conflict resolution, Biblical discipleship, health and hygiene, and nutrition.
The sheer determination and hard work of previous trainees, often in the face of great obstacles, has seen them transform their lives. This change can be exponential, as every young person passes on what they have learnt to their communities.
DID YOU KNOW? Uganda has the youngest population in the world
Kira graduate, Prisca, was a former child soldier in the Lord's Resistance Army. Find out how her life has been transformed.
Amigos Worldwide is a registered Charity/NGO both in the UK and Uganda.
Amigos Worldwide, Registered in England, Company Number 6122350, Registered Charity Number 1119450
Registered Office 7A Beech Grove, Pilton, Barnstaple, Devon. EX31 1PZ
(Amigos International and Amigos are working names of Amigos Worldwide)