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Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Techies club iii in Lira.

The event that took place on 2nd and 3rd October 2014 at 291 suits hotel in Lira District saw most ICT officers of several C4C projects walk away with several skills.
The workshop whose theme was “Computer maintenance and troubleshooting” was very interactive and participatory.
Mr. Andrew giving his presentation
The workshop that attracted officers from UNHCO, Computers for schools, LACCODEF the hosts, Health Child, I-Network, Diocese of Jinja, Pope Johns’ hospital-Aber (UCMB), and RWECO was facilitated by Mr. Andrew the Lecturer Makerere Business school and also an ICT consultant with CFSU.
He took participants into several sessions including among others, ICT management, ICT equipment maintenance, how to train others, Developing an Organisational ICT policy, Procurement, depreciation and disposal of ICT assets, : ICT support contract management and several practical sessions.
Participants at a practical session.
Pamela Kiria from I-Network also led a discussion on ICT and gender and several issues were discussed including why there are few ladies compared to males in the ICT sector and the way forward to bring more on board.
The project end users from Agwata Primary school presented the benefits and challenges they’ve had with the project where LACCODEF supported them with ICT equipment. It was a nice experience and later on day two the team visited Agwata primary school in Dokolo District 35kms from Lira town.

The team resolved to have the next techies in Kampala which will be the forth.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

WE CAN CHANGE THE REGION:


Teachers from the districts of Kasese under the Connect for Change (C4C) project run by RIC-NET had a field visit to schools in Kabarole. The visit took place on 19th September 2014 with field visit at St.Leo’s college Kyegobe then to Canon Apollo PTC to look at the operation of the college English lab and Kyebambe Girls schools. The main objective was “to learn what the teachers in Kabarole have done and share lessons and experiences”. The main goal is to contribute to improved performance of students through effective teaching-learning process in Secondary schools in Kasese.14 teachers 5 6 female and 8 males representing 3 schools and 1 PTC participated in the field learning trip.


Some of the benefits of integrating ICT into teaching and learning include the following; ICT caters for Different learning Styles of learners, ICT enables learners to play an active role in learning, ICT increases the attention span of learners; A lesson that incorporate ICT well has the ability of engaging learners and therefore tends to capture and hold the attention of the learners for a long time.ICT can provide real-life experiences; ICT can help link the subject taught to real-world situations or examples. For example watching news item on TV about flooding caused by climate change in one part of the world is a real-life, ICT encourages collaborative learning: learners can work in groups to achieve learning objectives. Instead of working alone on projects and activities, learners share ideas, learn team work skills and help each other to accomplish tasks, ICT improves presentation of work; use of word processors and presentation software enables neat presentation of work. This boosts self confidence among learners (and teachers).ICT offers flexibility of anywhere anytime learning.



The lessons learnt were; sharing skills and knowledge is more important. “Our success has largely depended on the support of the school administration” said Lillian of St.Leo’s college. The head teacher has supported us greatly. He appropriated us with the English room and supported us with training. “Adaptation to innovations depends on the person’s attitude to change” said Felix of St.Thereza. I therefore encourage other teachers to be positive to whatever changes and innovations in teaching that comes our way. “ICT innovation improves the teacher’s innovations in lesson preparation” said Edna of Kilembe SS. Preparing a lesson using ICT tools require that you spend good time preparing the lesson which improves the teacher’s creativity. Teachers are also learners all the time and learning is a lifelong process, we should impress this learning ability. “We are not paid in terms of money but the output to the community” Mr. Jobson. English labs are important for the improving the teaching learning ability and teachers promised to work with the administration to have these labs functional. “We are the ones to sustain the project and make it spread to other schools by showing high level of skills and being examples in our schools” Mr. Muhumuza of Kyebambe Girls. We should make proper use of the equipments.




From these lessons we can make difference and change the way English is taught in schools. In doing that the teachers pledged to form an association of teachers from 6 schools such that they can easily share the innovations and influence change of attitude towards the subject on the side of the learn and improve the literacy level. 

Monday, September 22, 2014

RWENZORI REGIONAL CONSULTATIVE MEETING ON FREE AND FAIR ELECTIONS.



On the 18th and 19th September 2014 , RIC-NET joined RWECO, KRC, NDI, CEDU and NGO Forum to organize and facilitate at the Rwenzori regional consultative meeting on "free and fair elections" that was held at Kagote SDA hall in Fort Portal.

The two day consultative meeting aimed at building consensus on issues for reform and coming up with  citizens proposals and concerns on free and fair elections and other development issues in the Rwenzori region that will be further discussed in the national consultative meeting on free and fair elections.
The meeting was attended by over 200 participants from the 7 districts of the Rwenzori region of Kabarole, Kyenjojo, Kasese, Bundibugyo, Kamwenge, Kyegegwa and Ntoroko Districts. The participants included the RDCs, MPs, District chairperson LC5, religious leaders, political party representatives, representatives of PLWDs, academia, students from universities, cultural institutions representatives, youth representatives, women groups leaders, trader unions and farmers group representatives.



participants  made resolution concerning the independence of the electoral commission; representatives of special groups; democracy under political parties;  relationships of citizens and the elected leaders; the electoral process from registration, campaigning,voting, counting of votes and tallying; nomination fees of different elected leaders positions; demarcation of constituencies; access to media during the electoral process;age qualification of different office bearers; form of government after the general election;tenure of office of the elected leaders; requirements of civil servant in relation to being elected leaders, role of armed forces in the electoral process, decentralization of powers and resources; protection from property deprivation and appointment of constitutional commissions. the citizens resolve to use their resolution as key demands from their members of parliament when the bill on electoral reforms is tabled in parliament.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Empowering ICT teachers/tutors and Lab technicians with repair and maintenance basics

Having realized the day to day challenges of computer lab assistants and or ICT teachers in schools and Teacher training colleges, RIC-NET in partnership with CFSU organized a repair and maintenance training for the teachers and lab assistants.
The two days training that attracted ICT teachers/tutors and lab assistants from St.Charles voc s.s, St. Thereza girls-Nsenyi, kilembe s.s and Bwera teachers college was held in Fort Portal, RIC-NET head office. 
RICNET ED stressing a point
A number of ideas as well as practical (hands on) assignments were performed.
In his opening remarks the Director RIC-NET welcomed the participants and thanked their institutions’ management for having implemented a resolution that was passed of training them (participants) during a head teachers and Principals meeting that was held late last term. He went ahead in delivering one of the two days sessions content about security with computers and internet.
He wished them an inspiring and good two days training and asked them to ask and understand better.
Opening up his session on repair and maintenance, the RIC-NET ICT officer asked the participants to be more attentive, interactive and ask whatever question they would love to about the topic since he had enough expertise in that field.
The training was divided into three sessions; hard ware & security and software on day one and two respectively.
ICT Officer during the training emphasising technical issues
Several issues were discussed and performed during the two days session from 12th-13th sept.2014 including comp. blowing, installations of several software like g operating systems, hard ware troubleshooting among others.
At the end of the 2 days session the participants realized that they are actually the small things that they neglect with their computers that at the end of the day will result into serious computer problems, and thus if safe maintenance measures are practiced, there would be no serious computer break downs.

The participants promised to practice and put the skills acquired to use in their respective institutions and that there would be a field monitoring activity by the RIC-NET ICT officer to find out if there has been any change in their way of handling computers and if such common problems had reduced.
The ICT officer RIC-NET further related the computer maintenance to human health, “just like we handle our health if you took boiled water and slept under a mosquito net you may not contract those malaria and typhoid complications, and so is the same story with computers. If well maintained, scanned they may not reach a step of going down completely” he said
In his closing remarks, the Director RIC-NET asked the participants to cause a change in as far as ICT usage in their institutions is concerned. He told them to be of value to their schools and effectively use the skills attained. He further told them that Information technology is all about the attitude, that even if u acquired the skills and never pick the interest to practice those practical things then you may never progress. 
Participants doing it themselves
The training ended later in the afternoon of the second day and participant

Friday, September 5, 2014

Support Children education by donating to Global fund for children

Dear Friend,
For many of us, the school year is in full swing—school buses once again rumble through our neighborhoods, and our children head off each morning with backpacks stuffed. 
But as a supporter of GFC, you know that for many of the world’s children, school is only a dream. Together, we have the power to change this. 
Peru Huchuy-YachaqPlease donate now and make education a reality for children who would otherwise remain in poverty and a face a future of hardship. 
When you donate to GFC, you support mobile libraries and curbside classrooms that reach children in some of the most underserved communities around the globe. You help make sure girls, indigenous children, and children with disabilities are given equal footing in the classroom and beyond. You give children in conflict zones the opportunity to learn in a safe and caring environment—even in the midst of war. 
To honor children everywhere—the schoolchildren in your community, and those who are still struggling to make their dream of going to school a reality—please donate today.
We couldn’t do this important work without you. Together, we can help bring education to all children, regardless of their circumstances. Thank you!
My Best,

Susan Goodell
Susan Goodell | Chief Executive Officer 
The Global Fund for Children | 1101 14th Street NW, Suite 420 | Washington, DC 20005 |USA 
www.globalfundforchildren.org| ...advancing the dignity of children and youth worldwide

Thursday, August 28, 2014

FARMERS VOICES AMPLIFIED

Members of the food security cluster from the Rwenzori region had a learning event to share on the marketing system that is farmer owned to support their household income and improve on the food security. The event involved trip to Bundibugyo Cocoa farmers association (BCFA) in Bundibugyo and Busaiga cooperative SACCO (BCA) in Kichwamba sub county Kabarole.
Learning event focusing on collective marketing and farmers owned credit system( financial services).
The learning event was a result of stakeholders meeting early in the year that came up with two needs that are cutting across all the farmers i.e. saving and Credit. In other words how can we emphasis the farmers’ cohesion towards SAVING and CREDIT to improve farmer participation in agriculture.
The learning objectives were; Share experience of the case studies and how the farmers have managed to transformed their groups more, How women have been involved in management, leadership and marketing in the organization, Look at the applicability of the different model to improve the love for farming and agriculture in particular.

The study focused on Busaiga Sacco (BSA) and Bundibungyo Cocoa farmers association (BCA); Busaiga is a Sacco that begun in 1992 by a group of Waragi sellers. They used to give each 10 liter jerrican. It’s a farmer owned Sacco and the beneficiary are the farmers. Members increased as the farmers realized the benefits. They were able to transform from giving out Waragi to money. In 2003 the group was registered as cooperative.


There 1020 members in the Sacco. Recruitment in the Sacco depends on the members (a member can recommend another person to join the Sacco. There is compulsory saving the current portfolio stands at 145 million at the head office and 55 million at the branch office. Loan portfolio stand at 111millions. At least 5 million is maintained on daily basis as liquid cash. Credit given out range from 300000 to 7 million for a group or individual. Credit is given to members and members can guarantee each other from the different groups.

BCA, is located in Mataisa village in bundibugyo district. It’s operating in 5 sub counties. The idea originated from the university dissertation of Methodius in 2008 as a student of BA Agricultural extension. He was answering the questions “how can cocoa farmers benefit from the production if this product”.the group is led by Mr.Methodias
He identified 15 farmers in the community from who he developed his marketing model that has become a boast to the farmers. He realized that farmers are being exploited a lot and its his time the farmers to determine the market price or reach the market by themselves. The situation was thus;                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The marketing association have benefited members in ways like; Improved income of the farmers, Improved saving culture, There is constant and direct price received by the farmers, There an organized way of farmes to reap from there labour,More household farmers have joined the marketing association, Members can easily pay fees for their children.

What makes the groups a success? A group(s) of farmers working on the same enterprise and common characteristics, Design of the marketing plan, The leadership that is farmer oriented, Immediate results realized in terms of income, The social inclusion factor and elements that have been incorporated in the marketing group,Onspot accountability of all the finances of the association.
Saving and credit in the groups: There is compulsory saving of all the group members. Each member saves at least 100 shillings on every kilogram sold. However it can be improved according the group’s members wishes after a consensus. Support loan advance to farmers to buy cocoa or matooke. Every member has an account with the association. There are 17 groups each with 30-50 members. There are fixed saving and current saving.
Achievements of the marketing association: A plots have already secured to have permanent offices and a ware house constructed, the farmers voices have easily been amplified through the different channels, and Associations is moving towards being registered as a cooperative union. Farmers can now determine the prices of their produce direct from the buyers.