Collin applied to the Foundation for Sustainable Community Based Development—Jinja Uganda in order to learn more about community-based development. As a Master of Public Policy: International Development, Collin is interested in learning various ways to help reduce conflict. He believes no confrontation or conflict can be approached the same way. He realizes that situations arise from more than differing ideologies; they arise from migration, lack of resources, and poverty to name but a few. He believes capacity-building is key to improving the lives of others. By coming to Uganda, he hoped to improve his ability to both work cross-culturally and manage development projects.

Collin’s project addressed Naluvule Village’s lack of financial institutions and low poverty by increasing their ability to form village savings and loan association (VSLA) groups, improve existing VSLAs, and start income-generating activities. These activities combined provide villagers the capacity to address both immediate, and more importantly, long-term financial goals.

The Community Needs Assessment highlighted many challenges stemming from a lack of VSLA skills—accounting, setting & determining interest rates, and loan recovery. The second issue was generating more revenue to address their state of poverty. The villagers, specifically SILK, also faced the challenge of successfully developing and sustaining IGAs.

All planned activities were successfully completed. Activities addressed three main objectives: Improve VSLA functions through professional VSLA training, identify potential IGAs for each VSLA, and improve business planning and management skills. Objective 1 was completed through three days of professional training. Objective 2 was addressed by Collin. He developed a two-day class to address goal creation and how to identify viable IGAs. Objective 3 was addressed through a two-day course that covered business basics. The completion of each activity gave VSLA groups the tools to continuously improve their VSLAs and use the capital raised through their VSLAs to create IGAs whenever needed. The success of this pilot program will be determined by future monitoring and evaluation (M&E). Based on lessons learned from M&E, future participants and donors can help by providing other villages within Kalagala parish the same opportunities as those in Naluvule Village. Help can also be given to Naluvule as future adjustments are made to the program.

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