Send a Cow Uganda (SACU)
Send a Cow Uganda (SACU) is a livelihoods improvement development NGO that came into existence in 1988 as a result of an appeal by a Ugandan Bishop to Christian farmers in the UK to help combat poverty, which had increased drastically because of the more than 20 years of civil strife. Today, SACU works with over 53,000 vulnerable women and girls, the youth, orphaned and vulnerable children, widows and PWDs organised in self-help groups in the East, North and Central Uganda with a mission of giving communities and families the hope and the means to secure their own futures from the land.
SACU delivers this mission by enabling households to be self-reliant through an integrated Farm Systems, Gender & Social Development and Enterprise approach giving priority to communities that have experienced inherent marginalisation and chronic poverty, exclusion and have suffered such calamities as internal displacement, conflict, HIV/AIDS and natural disasters.
Send a Cow Uganda is an important member of the Make 12.4% Work team because at the beginning of 2018, they launched an all-inclusive pilot project to support households with disabled people in Northern Uganda. The Amuru Disability Mainstreaming Project (ADIMAP), funded by Big Lottery, UK, was formed to ensure that 4,500 vulnerable and disabled people living in the Amuru district live sustainably through increased agricultural production so that they are food secure, have improved nutrition, establishment of on-farm and off-farm enterprises for increased incomes, savings and assets and increased awareness and participation by persons with disabilities (PWDs). Under this project, SACU works in partnership with the National Union of Women with Disabilities of Uganda (NUWODU) to ensure disabled people are genuinely involved and supported and will continuously create awareness on barriers faced by disabled people to be involved in the development agenda. The self-help groups will have a 30% representation of PWDs with a wide range of disabilities to facilitate dialogue on disability inclusion mindful of gender-based inequality at household and community level. SACU and NUWODU will ensure that disabled partners participate in the various on-farm and off-farm income generating activities and have access to village savings and loan facilities and are involved in adaptive sustainable agricultural technologies and make farming more accessible and friendly to PWDs.
Prior to the ADIMAP, SACU has since September, 2016 been implementing a disability specific USAID funded Agriculture for Women with Disability Activity (USAID-AWDA) focusing on improving the livelihoods of 1,500 households women and girls with disabilities in four districts of Kamuli, Buyende, Luuka and Kaliro in Busoga Sub region. This project has shown good results in changing the lives of women and girls with disabilities and their households; as Joy Nabirye, who has a physical impairment states: “The Send a Cow Uganda training has enabled me to become a peer farmer even with my physical disability. As a peer farmer, train both disabled and non-disabled people in better farming techniques for better crop yield.” She further mentions: “Even after just one year of the project, you can see the impact, especially in terms of increased food availability, improved nutrition, diversified sources of income and respect among communities. We are now seen as people with a purpose. Before, we were people nobody bothered about. But we now hold positions of influence in the community. We are very happy! I can crawl and dig and provide food for my family and earn my own money, which was not the case before!”
The lessons learned under USAID – Agriculture for Women with Disability Activity are useful in the implementation of The Amuru Disability Mainstreaming Project (ADIMAP).