Tuesday, August 3, 2010

First MicroGrant Competition in Uganda Kicks Off!

60 women in rural Wanteete Village to compete

Aaron Bukenya, Director of Burgere Education Support Organization (BESO) is working with Spark MicroGrants to facilitate a competition for a $1,000 grant in Wanteete Village, Uganda. The village is about two and a half hours outside of Kampala, Uganda’s capital city. Wanteete residents just barely get by from the crops they grow. Beautiful crops surround people’s homes including vegetables, ground nuts, bananas, corn, millet, pineapple, coffee, vanilla beans and much more. A few chickens and goats roam the grounds. Although their land is fertile and they are able to live substantially from their own food production, their basic needs are barely met – when they are. The nearest health center is five to six miles away and poorly equipped. Most residents of Wanteete are below the poverty line and cannot easily afford medicine or other monetary goods if they need them. Some kids go to school but have to walk miles for a classroom that two hundred plus students try to cram into. There is no electricity and few of the grass-thatched huts that fill the village have latrines.

Aaron dedicates his time to helping underserved children and women in the rural communities of the Bugerere County. He pulls his own time and money to send children to school and organizes women’s groups while also taking care of his family. When he was young, his parents sold their cows and whatever they could to allow him to go to school. As his parents invested in his education, despite their hardships, Aaron is now spending his energy to do what he can for his communities. He founded BESO in 2008. The organization sponsors children’s education and women’s empowerment. You can learn more at: www.besoug.org

This is the first of three $1,000 MicroGrant competitions that Aaron is facilitating in Uganda. We are very excited for these competitions and grateful to Aaron and his coworkers for their hard work serving under-resourced communities and making MicroGrants possible in Uganda!

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