July 2016: Uganda: Mushrooms Farming Training Project

Mushrooms Farming Training Project: Rewenzori Area – East Uganda

Background and Necessity of the Project
In most counties, surveys indicate that seventy families out of hundred don’t earn 2,500 Uganda Shillings (approximately 0.75 USD) every two weeks. This has resulted in miserable conditions and violence in the communities. There is visual malnutrition in most children, frequent sicknesses in both Adults and Young, school drop outs, family wrangles and divorce, criminal acts like thefts as people try to earn from where they did not invest; and in general severe poverty is seen.
The situation has been worsened by prolonged droughts due to climate change, leading to crop failure. Then the inflated Ugandan economy where the national currency shilling has lost value has made the money worthless. Moreover, high amount of taxation of every activity up to the smallest retail activities has triggered the purchasing capacity of the poor to the point of none.
The undesirable political problems like the post election violence which rocked most of Ugandan villages especially the area called Rwenzori region have caused hundreds of people lost their lives and families to be displaced. All these have led to the extreme suffering of the communities that have been living in a needy life. This project is planned in view of capacitating the people in their struggle of countering these natural and man-made causalities leading to starvation through training so that they will have alternatives in generating their daily consumption and minimize starvation.

Why Training on Mushrooms Farming?
We are training people in mushrooms farming with a strong contemplation that this type of in-house farming will help them revolving their food demands in the most efficient and productive manner. For one thing, Mushrooms farming doesn’t require seasonal planting conditions as it is the farmer who provides those conditions. Besides, it is a project the farmer can carry out while attending to other fulltime activities. Time-wise, it can boost the family nutrition within a period of 3 months after sowing.

Who are benefiting from the Project?
The main targets of this project are households who lost lives of their relatives in the post election violence, whose village was attacked at night and many innocent people women and children killed. Families with more children and orphans who have not yet reached the age of fending for themselves or being trained in self help skills are primarily considered. Currently, the project is at trial stage. Accordingly, 10 households from each county are selected for training and piloting. If success is to be realized, the plan is to expand the project into more 90 households in thee counties.
This project is currently managed by a former teacher Thomas Kenja who committed in helping orphan children and widows in the area. PBF fully hopes and expects that this project will assist the needy people in their effort and strive to maintain their normal life by producing mushrooms both for their daily consumption and for the sale of these products in the market and generate income so that they could be capable of affording their health, education and other living expenses.