In 2000, His Excellency President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni established the Poverty Alleviation Department (PAD) in his office to specifically address wealth creation at household level. Under the President’s guidance, PAD developed the Presidential Initiative Against Hunger and Poverty to reflect His Excellency’s vision in fighting hunger whilst assisting homesteads to generate adequate incomes. The Initiative formally launched in January 2004 in Ruharo Parish in Bushenyi District, is gradually spreading to other districts.
To date, there are 19 Model Parishes all over the country under implementation and five in the pipeline. PAD has registered success in the model parishes and is proud that the model parish concept is to be rolled out as a national strategy for fighting poverty at the household level (according to the 2011-2016 NRM Manifesto).
PAD identified and linked entrepreneurs to H.E. the President, eventually their projects were funded by Government. They include, Mrs. Kizza of St. Jude in Masaka in fruit drying; and Sembeguya Estates in goat multiplication and export scheme. Under the joint venture with government, 108 farmers were selected to participate in the scheme; Teresa Winery is another entrepreneur promoted by H.E. the President through PAD.
That is not all. The impact of our interventions has improved the livelihoods of thousands of families in Uganda and as we mark ten years of our existence, we would like to share with the public what H.E. the President has done through Presidential initiatives under PAD. Indeed this publication highlights H.E’s aspirations of transforming poor communities into self-sustaining, economically empowered communities.
Vision and Mission
The Vision of PAD is Prosperity for all Ugandans i.e, every household in Uganda has the means to earn the minimum income that enables it to access basic human needs such as; Food, Shelter, Clothing, Health and Education while the Mission is, “To transform poor communities into self sustaining entities economically and socially.”
PAD Core Objectives
To implement Presidential Directives and Initiatives
To assist communities increase household incomes through integrated Agro-enterprises.
To promote Agricultural Production Zones and Value Addition.
To facilitate the formation of Producer Farmer Groups and then link them to Markets and Affordable Credit.
To foster Development Partnerships and also support science and technology innovations that compliment rural transformation.
Functions of the Poverty Alleviation Department
This component addresses general cleanliness and homestead hygiene, compound setup, availability of clean toilet facilities, utensils Rack, energy saving cooking facilities, clean water harvesting and storage facilities, general homestead hygiene and health facilities. These constitute the bench marks that every beneficiary of the Presidential Initiative must fulfill.
This addresses the issue of hunger. It aims at improving availability of food both qualitatively and quantitatively. The food crops mainly used are improved/Hybrid Cassava, Sweet Potatoes, Yams, Millet, Upland Rice, Maize and Beans. In addition, all beneficiaries are encouraged to have Legumes, Vegetables and Fruits. This Pillar promotes best agro-practices through mobilization, training exposure tours and demonstrations. It also promotes soil rejuvenation through the utilization of organic manure and promoting agro-forestry.
Income Generating Enterprises
This component tackles poverty and lack of adequate incomes for households. The President's Vision is to have every homestead in Uganda earn adequate incomes to cover their expenses and also be able to save. There are several factors that determine the types of Enterprises that are chosen for different homesteads and communities. The Department is currently promoting the following activities as Basic and Affordable Income Generating Enterprises; Zero Grazing, Piggery, Poultry, Sheep and Goat Rearing, Pond Fishing, Bee Keeping, Honey and Wax Processing, Clonal Coffee Growing, Fruit Growing, Crafts Making, Tailoring, Metal Fabrication.
The Department also promotes
Value Addition of Agricultural Products
Juice and Banana Flour Making
Value Addition and Marketing
The Enterprises promoted by PAD are based on Market and Market Information reflecting demand at National, Regional and International Levels. In order to increase Revenue to farmers and access Regional and International Markets, Value Addition is very critical. PAD uses the following criteria for selecting Priority Sectors;
Sectors which possess or have the potential to possess, a significant competitive advantage;
Sectors which possess or have the potential to possess, high Value-addition;
Sectors which already contribute significantly to Employment and Regional development;
Sectors which have a high potential development impact (Employment Generation and Gender Equity, Positive Environmental Impact and Resource Conservation, Poverty Eradication);
Sectors experiencing high growth in International Demand;
Savings and Credit
This is mainly intended for the Urban Poor and Organized Rural Groups that lack land but have viable income generating activities. The beneficiaries are mainly Women and Youth Groups or Community Based Organizations. The groups are first strengthened through training on;
Saving and Credit;
Basic Management Techniques;
After the training, a Seed Grant to act as a Revolving Fund is availed to them for provision of Soft Loans to the Members. Where the Groups or SACCOs do not exist, the Department guides and assists the communities to establish them.
The Model Parish Concept
A Model Parish as the name suggests is an intervention evolved by H.E. the President to provide a Model for Socio-economic Transformation within a Parish Set-up which other communities can emulate and use to tackle poverty. Under the guidance of H.E. the President, PAD makes Demonstration Farms and Model Parishes to fulfill the President's zeal to show the farmers and communities the best;
Agro-practices of Farming Systems
On Farm Manure Production and Application
Post Harvest Practices
Diseases and Pest Control.
The communities are trained on how to engage in market-led farming on small holding to realize meaningful incomes. “The Concept of Model Parishes is built around Progressive Farmers who are identified as Lead Farmers / Change Agents in the areas of operation”. They are then trained in best Agro-practices. When PAD eventually withdraws from the community, the Lead Farmer takes on the role of training the communities. They are the core for the formation of the community producer groups.
Pad Key Personnel
Mrs. Joan Kankwenzire
Senior Presidential Advisor on poverty Alleviation/ Head of Department.
Mrs. Lydia Balemezi
Special Presidential Assistant on Education and Mass mobilization
Mrs. Felistus Magomu
Special Presidential Assistant on Production
Mr. Lawrence Kabwama
Principal Development Analyst/Finance Officer
Mr. Sulaiman Walusimbi
Public Relations Officer
Mr. Robert Kayeyera
Data Management Officer
Ms. Deborah Balemeezi
Field Officer/Office Assistant.