RCE Greater Eastern Uganda-2016

1. Project Title: 
Youth empowerment for promoting sustainable development education and practice
2. Thematic area/s addressed by the project
3. Project partner contact information : 
Tororo District Local Government Uganda
Mobilize stakeholders and provide facilitation
Main Contact: 
Dr. Edward Andama
Dr. Edward Andama
Busitema University
Alternative project contact: 
Ms. Ujeyo Magaret Suubi
Busitema University Department of Education
4. Project type
5. Project description
Provide a short description of the project including strategies, regional challenges, aims and specific project activities.: 

Background Youth the world over are faced with a lot of challenges which are hindering their development and Uganda is no exception. According to the “State of Uganda’s Population Report 2013” youth below 30 years form 78% of the population making it a country with the youngest population in the world and the trend is continuing! Because of unemployment, most of them over 35% unfortunately rely on their ageing parents for support. Many youth have dropped out of school for reasons such as lack of fees, early pregnancy, early marriages etc., and yet, they are an untapped resource which, if well guided, would be able to advance development among their communities especially for those who have had the chance to study.   For this reason, Greater Eastern Uganda Regional Centre of Excellence (GEURCE) and Tororo district local government have partnered to focus on the youth as champions of sustainable education and practice project.


GEURCE constitutes the regional learning space for sustainable development for greater Eastern Uganda. This region too suffered from rebel insurgency and a lot of youth missed formal education and are emersed in poverty. GEURCE aims to contribute to the improvement of quality of life in the society, respect for the earth and life in all its diversity. Furthermore, it is committed to promote democracy in society without exclusion and where peace prevails. Rational education plays a central and critical role in one’s ability to respond to constantly changing opportunities that development presents. The expected results should impact positively on the youth in particular by improving their capacity to improve themselves thus impacting on their standard of living. To empower the youth through imparting knowledge, mentorship, career guidance practical skill development, creating networking opportunities and exchange of ideas with other youth, in order create opportunities for sustainable development in collaboration with the universities, schools and communities. 

Aim: The aim of the project is to provide a forum for the youth to equip them with knowledge and skills for sustainable development.
Specific Objectives
•    Inculcate the spirit of leadership and responsibility among the youth (appropriate life skills such as team work, recognition of opportunities, critical thinking, decision making, assertiveness etc.) for sustainable development

•    Acquire knowledge on value addition, generate income from agriculture, and other aspects of business and 
•    Sensitise youth on the critical role they can play in ensuring healthy environment and sanitation education, prevention and control of alcohol, drug abuse and the spread HIV/Aids in their communities
•    Empower youth to harness, utilise and manage resources from their environment responsibly for promoting sustainably development
The youth at the university and schools are engaged through participatory and an informal through the following activities:
•    Group discussions and role model and role plays.
•    Topical thematic discussions
•    Field visits to biodiversity rich sites.
•    Taking lead in promoting sanitation education and practices within community Interaction between the community and the Universities: (Busitema University, Kumi University, Islamic University in Uganda (IUIU) Mbale and other tertiary,  education institutions.
Expected outcomes
•    Better informed, self-respecting responsible and confident youth   
•    Formation of youth networks community, local and regional levels, for mentoring, exchange of ideas and experiences 
•    Better understanding of Education for sustainable Development (ESD) and RCE Network 
•    Increased awareness of the dangers of alcohol and drug abuse, sanitation/ health education, nutrition and more responsible behaviour for the reduction of HIV/Aids  
•    Recognise entrepreneurial opportunities in agriculture and environment and value addition of agricultural products
•    Better conserved and managed environment through promoting tree planting and conservation of biodiversity. 
•    Increased  understanding of culture,  indigenous knowledge and the role it can play in sustainable development

6. Project status
On Going
The project of “Youth empowerment for promoting sustainable development education and practice” is a partnership project between Busitema University Tororo district local government and other educational institutions focusing on the youth in the universities, primary and secondary school students in Eastern Uganda and beyond. The project is intended to empower youth to be responsive to issues of sustainability and development through provision of skills, attitudes and practices of sustainable development. The key facilitators are both the youth and adults. It involves providing opportunity for youth to share their challenges and available opportunities during community event activities, general and breakout discussion sessions. Youth are divided into groups based on gender to share ideas and experiences on various topics. The discussions are guided by leading questions. Other activities include role play aimed at demonstrating the rich talents and skills within the youth community to promote self learning among them. Market place approach is used for displaying identified talents, opportunities, niches and solutions. Field visit and excursion to biodiversity rich sites and sites of historical importance are aimed at creating awareness and importance of biodiversity. Workshops are run as an informal training for youth to share and explore opportunities to bring forth “home grown solutions”, get empowered to be responsive to issues of climate change, food security, sustainable water use, sanitation, ecosystem management and biodiversity conservation, sustainable farming practices among others.
8. Tagging