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Agriculture & Livelihoods

Supporting rice farmers in Northern Uganda

When Dr. Agnes Atim Apea came to the Amolatar District in Northern Uganda to research her doctoral thesis on development in post-conflict, she found that the decades of LRA war had left the women there with huge social problems. In an area where women were traditionally excluded from owning land, they struggled with addressing gender-based violence. Families working in agriculture were locked into cycles of poverty, they needed a source of income without depending on handouts.

Agnes set up Hope Development Initiative as a cooperative with a strict focus on helping women. She introduced rice as a new crop in the district; providing technical farming services and a guaranteed market. Alongside a stable income, HDI funds maternity wards to ensure the health and well-being of the whole community. Today HDI are working with thousands of women.

With the income generated from the rice sales, the first group of women have already become landowners and thus achieved economic independence.

“We empower women in Uganda by training them in rice farming. The profits are invested in healthcare facilities to deliver babies safely, which is transforming communities. YSB has been a God-given partner, they understand the kind of business that I run and came on board to support me when I really needed it the most.”  - Dr. Agnes Atim Apea


“A charity dollar has one life -

a social business dollar can be invested over and over again”

Prof. Muhammad Yunus