As a way of supporting communities to become active participants and advocate for their rights for better livelihoods, National Association of Professional Environmentalists (NAPE) has organized the communities affected by land grabbing in Rwamutonga Village, Bugambe Sub-County in Hoima district to establish a sustainability village.
The affected residents who were recently returned land after spending more than two years in Rwamutoga camp for internally displaced people following a brutal eviction in 2014 still live in fear of being re-evicted.
NAPE, therefore, found it imperative to organize them as an organized team through a sustainability village so that they can be empowered and informed on their rights so as to fight fearfulness, docility and complacency, according to Allan Kalangi, the Manager for NAPE’s Sustainability School Program.
While talking to the residents on June 11th, Mr. Kalangi said the communities can solve community problems when they are organized as a team with active team leaders ready to spearhead sustainable local level development and fighting for their rights while resisting forces that threaten them.
“When you are solving problems as individuals, you cannot be heard but when you work as one voice then you can be listened to,” Kalangi said.
Four people were selected to be Community Educators. The educators will be trained through NAPE advocacy trainings to know much about sustainable development, and sharing experience and knowledge from affected communities. They will then be able mobilize and sensitize other community members for better livelihoods.
Onzima Alozyous, the area LCI chairman, who was one of the selected community educators, hailed NAPE for supporting the affected resident ever since they were evicted in 2014. He said he was optimistic that sustainability village will help them become a strong community ready to fight for their rights.
“I am grateful to NAPE for their continued support. You gave us Green Radio as a platform to air our voices and we were indeed heard. With your continued support, I believe we have a better future,” he said.
STORY COMPILED BY PRECIOUS NATURINDA