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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

RICNET HOLDS A REFRESHER TRAINING IN PSYCHOSOCIAL SUPPORT FOR TEACHERS



A total of 8 female teachers appeared for the training that took place at palace motel Fort Portal. The three day training took place on the 25th, 26th and 27th March 2015 and brought teachers from St Theresa girls Nsenyi Kasese, Semliki high school Bundibugyo, Rwamwanja secondary school Rwamwanja refugee settlement Kamwenge and Bujubuli vocational secondary Kyaka ii refugee camp
  Kyegegwa district.
 
RIC-NET staff Evelyn poses with the teachers and the facilitator after the training
The training aimed at equipping teachers with more skills of handling conflict affected girls and help girls address challenges that they face in their day to day life. Provide the teachers with more knowledge about psychosocial support and how they can use it to help young girls in their day today challenges and discuss about some of the girl child challenges and how they can be solved by female teachers.

some of the teachers during an ice break
The training involved a lot of creativity and practicability in addressing girl children challenges and with a lot of fun with many ice breaks. The training saw teachers go home with new knowledge of handling girl child issues and also able to mentor girls and make them successful and resourceful people in their lives.





Monday, March 16, 2015

We joined the rest for ICT4D learning and Business Development workshops

The four days work shop that took place at Pope Paul memorial hotel in Kampala attracted participants from the Education and health nodes of the ICT4D partners. RWECO/RICNET, Computers for schools, Jinja Diocese, UNHCO, UCMB, among others.
The first two days 3rd and 4th March were meant for ICT4D learning and the major issues tackled were reviewing social innovation process; What was working well, What we found difficult in moving forward with the projects and What surprised us a session that was led by Bernadette Anneke. 

We discussed all these issues as a group.
We also discussed the organizational capacities and capabilities looking at Strengths and weaknesses in relation to the 5 capabilities and ICT integration. We teamed up as organizations and discussed our strengths and weaknesses in relation to;
1.  Capability to Adapt and self renewal
2.  Capability to relate and to attract resources and support
3.  Capability to commit and engage
4.  Capability to carry out tasks
5.  Capability to balance diversity and to achieve coherence
We also discussed the gender implications of ICT4D; how it influences what we do and how we do it with some experiences that were given by some participants.
We also discussed the progress of each organization, action research presentations that were given by the respective organizations where RWECO had done one and shared results with the members.
The workshop was characterized by several discussions and presentations by the participants that made it more interactive and beneficial.
Day two was winded up by discussing the way forward and upcoming events which emerged to be the Techies club and CCLE.

The second workshop Business Development started on 5th to 6th March at the same venue with objectives being highlighted.
This training led us to business models two days work that were facilitated by Ken Kumbuga from Ghana and Kaija Patrick Ugandan. We discussed the business plan vs a business model and understanding the difference between the two. We also realized that you need both of them to be able to succeed in the endeavors for a business. The difference between the two was given to be;
That where as a business plan is many pages, business model is one page, operational in thought is a business plan while a business model is strategic in thought and many other differences.
Emphasis was on a business model canvas (BMC) and the 9 building blocks of a BMC i.e problem, solution, resources, cost structure, unique value, customer relationships, channels, customer segments (target customers) and revenue streams.
We went further and designed draft business models for our organizations using the canvas model. RWECO/RICNET designed one for set up of a youth, school dropouts training center in I.C.T skills, entrepreneur skills, tailoring among others.
We also analyzed and documented our BMs looking at where our revenues will come from, what value is delivered to which market, the costs involved in delivering the value.

We also discussed in day two the sustainability of our organizations by looking at what kind of revenue generation activities our organizations will be involved in a year from now using the SWOT analysis of the business models we had developed.

We also discussed a cash flow analysis in relation to the business models, developed a sample business plan and put it together with the cash flow.
It was a good learning period to us all.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

I HAVE DISCOVERED THE MISSING LINK IN TEACHING OF ENGLISH.

Mr.Kule Eziron practically agreed to have realizing what was missing in his lesson planning and presentation of English language at Kilembe SS. This was during the training in use of ICT in lesson development and English methodology in teaching and learning of English at secondary schools level. The training was organized by Rwenzori Information Centers Network (RIC-NET) in conjunction with Connect for Change (C4C) and Rwenzori Consortium for Civic Competence (RWECO) on the implementation of project “innovative teaching and learning English using ICT tools” by retooling teachers and Tutors of English in innovative teaching and learning using ICT.
The four day training was held from 7th to 10th January 2015 with the objective as To improve the teachers of English’ ability in the use of ICT in lesson planning, development and presentation”. The participants were the English heads of department and Teachers and ICT teachers from St Charles SS, Kilembe SS, St Thereza Girls and Bwera PTC. The training content included among others, the use of local photos (pstory), videos (CINEDUC).

Mr. Kule observed the missing links were the use of locally captured photo, use sound and videos in driving his lesson and the new innovative methodology of using the “Umbrella” in teaching tenses. He mentioned that the three items will shift the lesson from teacher centers to learner centered. “I have also realized there are millions of teaching materials online (internet) which require the teacher to sort what suits his/her lesson” these innovations will improve my lesson presentation in comprehension, composition writing and literature in English.

Ms Lillian from St Leo’s college shared her experience of how the “Umbrella” had made it possible for her learners to grasp the tense which cover a great part in the English examination at the final stage of education. About 12 teachers,2 tutors and 2 resource persons participated in his training. Some actions were reached to rollout these innovations in schools which shall be handled through mentorship. 

RIC-NET AWARDED CERTIFICATE OF RECOGNITION BY U-REPORT

U –report is a program by UNICEF that helps in making voices of youth heard. U-report is a free SMS- based system that allows young Ugandans to speak out on what's happening in communities across the country, and work together with other community leaders for positive change by sending SMS to 8500 at no cost.
RIC-NET among other partners was awarded the certificate for its continued efforts towards the project.

The certificates were awarded during the first u-report partners meeting in 2015 that took place at UNICEF offices on  Friday 13th of Feb. 2015.
The RIC-NET certificate was received by her staff Kenyana Evelyn on behalf of the organization.
To register as a u-reporter SMS “join” to 8500 for free.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

WE ARE THE CHANGE AGENTS.


Teachers of English in Kasese agreed that “change begins with us”. This was during the reflection on the use of ICT in teaching and learning in secondary schools. The reflection was organized by Rwenzori Information Centers Network (RIC-NET) in conjunction with Connect for Change (C4C) and Rwenzori Consortium for Civic Competence (RWECO) on the implementation of project “innovative teaching and learning English using ICT tools” by retooling teachers and Tutors of English in innovative teaching and learning using ICT.

The meeting was held on the 30th January 2015 with the objective as “To identify areas of progress and develop strategies that can improve the teaching-learning of English” in the project schools. The participants were the English heads of department and Teachers from St Charles SS, Kilembe SS, St Thereza Girls and Bwera PTC as direct implementors of the innovations in the school. The reflection was also attended by 1 senior English teacher Ms Lillian Kababgambe who had used the innovation before and how she enjoys her work currently. 18 people 6 female and 12 males participated in the focus group meeting.

It was observed that there is great progress in using ICT in teaching-learning process especially it has simplified work, increased interaction among the teachers in the department and improved local innovation in lesson development and delivery. In St.Thereza for example “the new innovations have got an impact on composition writing among the learners, teachers have integrated ICT in their daily activity and the innovation have been taken up by other departments like French and Geography”. In Kilembe secondary, “teaching using ICT has specifically improved team work among the teachers which has had an impact in lesson delivery and improved results. It has improved creative learning among the learners in composition writing; thus it’s easy to test the four skills”. Above all students have impressed ICT to do research. It has enhanced the school management to procure software’s for management to reduce costs and improve efficiency.
However the constant transfers of teachers affect the continuity and reduce the chance to measure the impact since new teachers are introduced and adapt to the innovation every year. The teachers need more training in online sourcing for teaching materials and how they can integrate them in the teaching syllabus.

Ms Lillian shared her experience of how using ICT in teaching made her work simpler and she was able to measure the students’ progress easily. She said that ICT innovation makes lesson presentation simple; teacher is able to learn the abilities of the learners very easily, improves class interaction and control and tickles the learning’s minds to the reality. Thus a teacher has to be more practical in lesson development.

A number of action points were agreed upon to form the next step of actions to handle the challenges  realized.RIC-NET/RWECO and the heads of department on behalf of the schools agreed to take the challenges ahead with more hands on trainings and mentorship conducted to cater for school and individual challenges. 

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

2014 KNOWLEDGE EXCHANGE EVENT FOR GLOBAL FUND FOR CHILDREN PARTNERS

Rwenzori  information centers  Network as one of the grantees for the Global fund for children was privileged to attend the five days  2014 Uganda knowledge exchange that was held 7th-11 December  at the Bomah Hotel in Gulu Town.
Objectives of the workshop
·       To Deepen grantee partner’s understanding of and exposure to different  approaches  to supporting Girls  affected by conflict
·       To share programmatic and organizational experiences , challenges and opportunities
·       To increase grantee partner’s knowledge  of GFC non-grant  support  and of how to access these services
·       To explore innovative ways that grantee partners can optimize the benefits of their partnership with Global fund for children
Hope and peace, a partner organization located in Gulu Town jointly coordinated the KE with     by the GFC staff, Emmanuel Otto and Pamela Pratt.
A total of Fourteen participants from the different regions of Uganda . RIC-Net program manager participated in this workshop and made presentations on websites and use of social media for organization development. various organisations expressed intrest to have RIC-NET develop their websites and train them in  use of social media.
Activities involved:
Gallery walk set up
Gallery walk presentations
Grass root mentorship techiniques
Understanding GFC’s partnership strategy and value added services
Strategic planning
Monitoring and Evaluation
Preparation of child protection policy
Sharing on Models of Girls empowerment programs 
Facilitating Grass root organizational development
Field visit to sacred high school at the commissioning of the mentees in areas of leadership, Enterprenuership and Music Dance and Drama
It was an opportunity  also to Visit Gulu Town, learn from Girls empowerement Model applied by  Hope and peace interact with the M& E, OD  consultants:ie Herbert kamusime and Quinee Annet   with whom an implementation plan was drawn and agreed for 2015. by the end of the knowledge the participants had formed a Network to share on issues of conflict affected Girls.



Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Raise your hand and support vulnerable Girls and Children


http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/skilling-200-conflict-affected-girls-in-uganda/

Summary

RIC-NET provides psycho social, educational and livelihood support to 200 abused and traumatized girls(12-22 years old) who are struggling to recover from ADF civil war and conflict in Rwenzori region. specifically focuses on supporting young women with babies by enrolling their children in nursery schools, while helping the mothers to either go back to school or attain vocational skills ( ICT, tailoring, hair dressing, cloth design) and reproductive health. provides girls with start up fund.

What is the issue, problem, or challenge?

Over 27,500 girls were affected by Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) civil war in Rwenzori. Most girls were subjected to raids and abuse by the rebels, including sexual violence, physical abuse and high exposure to traumatic experiences. Major visible vulnerabilities are young women (and their children) who are out of school or born in captivity, living in slums and with no skills, employment, infected with HIV/AIDS and forced into marriage. The project will support skilling 200 girls in the region

How will this project solve this problem?

Facilitate education, skilling and apprenticeship to conflict affected girls; carry out psycho social, reproductive health, and livelihood support for school-going and out-of-school youth, especially girls, who are struggling to recover from conflict situations; Use ICT, social media, and community theater to break down barriers such as poverty and stigmatization and enable abused and traumatized girls to overcome challenges and achieve their full potential.

Potential Long Term Impact

The project will enable 200 conflict affected girls' access to school, and ensures they complete school will make these girls productive members of society; the girls will attain practical employment skills through vocational training, mentorship and apprenticeship that enables them to change their mindset and attitude, and get decent work, earn income and improve their livelihood hence reducing their vulnerability and restore self-confidence among themselves.

Funding Information

Total Funding Received to Date: $120
Remaining Goal to be Funded: $49,880
Total Funding Goal: $50,000

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

REGIONAL & DISTRICT NETWORKS CONVENE TO REFLECT ON THEIR JOURNEY BEYOND 2014

The Regional & District based Networks  from Uganda  convened at Esella country resort in kampala to a   two days convention organised by the Uganda National NGO Forum on  1st -2nd December 2014 to reflect on their  annual achievements work and beyond . among the participants was the Rwenzori information Centres Network (RIC-NET), Rwenzori Forum for  peace and Justice, 34 District Networks from the central, Western , eastern and  Northern regions  and representatives of Donors, NDI USAID, DGAP.
while opening the meeting, the Executive Director National NGO Forum,Mr Richard Sewakiryanga challenged the participants  to study History of CSOs uganda noting that the CSOs started in the country  very organisationed as cooperatives , trade unions, leisure as the uganda travelling threatre, football associations that were spread upcountry as the  kilembe mines, relligious  as the pentecostal , Youth Assembly, Girl guides and scouts.
He called the CSOs to reposition ourselves through respect inergrity documentation of the history, He  cautioned that its only in the CSOs where people work to develop others and yet less is done on their future, while calculating the Human Resource of 34 Districts Networks it was possible to influence 13 million people  with out much strive. CSOs should be  able to save for the future after retirement.
During the convention the participants shared areas where they had excelled as joint monitoring, budgeting,  AGMs, Advocacy,QUAM &  Networking.
The members shared their plans beyond 2014 to conduct Civic Education, monitoring  education performance .
Fundraising was key  at the this convention as the different Donors presented on funding modalities.
Jackson kaguri the founder of nyakaschool in kanungu shared that:
Donors give because they have been asked
Creating a relationship with the Donors is critical
Resource mobilisation is an act of every individual in the organisation
Always find out the passion of the giver before approaching   them  for support.
The convetion ended with a coktail.  





Tuesday, November 18, 2014

RIC-NET PARTICIPATES IN U-REPORT CONFRENCE AT NAMIREMBE GUEST HOUSE

The U- reporters and partners conference started on 12th /November/2014 as it was the arriving day for all participants at Namirembe Guest House where all participants enjoyed a decent and comfortable accommodation. 
On Thursday13th November was the real day for the conference which started with u-reporters sharing stories on how u-report has contributed to their community. 

Ms. Joy Kiiza  Morgan  from RIC-NET ( on front row) with some other u-reporters
 Opening remarks were made by U-report chief of communication Mr Jaya Murthy. We had a presentation from Mildmay on how peer educators have benefited from u-report

 U-reporters broke into 4 groups to discuss the 4 pillars of the convention of the rights of the children; participation, health, education and survival then presented the highlights of these discussions. 
Three invited guest members of parliament Hon Haji  Isabirye Idi Mp mayuge District in his remarks said “Information is power that you cannot decide without information” emphasized that U-report has helped the youth in the country to raise their voices about issues happening in their communities
Lastly u-reporters practiced the song titled “Imagine” by John Lennon with some of the artist that were invited like Navio,Mun G,peter miles,Jackie chandiru & Lilian Mbabazi
Ugandan Celebs celebrating with u-reporters
“The chorus of the song” 
‘Imagine all the people living   Life in peace………………. Yohooooooooooooooooo!
You may say iam a dreamer. But iam not the only one
I hope someday you will join us, And the world be as one”

In conclusion, on behalf of all U-reporters in Uganda I would like to thank UNICEF for the health information that is directly responsible for the well being of children in Uganda.
 Lastly for empowering the youth with a furor of developmental ideas!