Written by Nick James, 28th December 2018
“Itiye beyu?” Meaning how are you in Kumam. The local language spoken in Kalaki and large parts of the Teso area in Eastern Uganda. The year of 2018 ended with excellent achievements for ETFE. Each of the four sows gave birth to healthy piglets. This means a great deal of effort will be needed for the expansion of the piggery. Let’s hope that the launch of the Crowdfunder in UK will help towards some funding. One person pledging made this optimistic comment, which is worth sharing: “This is a great idea and I fully support the principles of agroecology. All the best to you and may this project be a success!” Do consider donating or pledging if you can. We have until February. It’s looking promising so far. With similar success, Joshua, Chair of the management committee, announced with joy that ten beehives had been set-up under the mango tree adjacent to the field of passion-fruit plants. To add to the good news, each of the hives very quickly had healthy colonies in them.
Earlier in December Asomo Genevieve and Dr Nicholas James travelled to Omor village from Kampala to see the progress that had been made. A selection of pictures below shows the various great achievements including a good number of passion-fruit seedlings taking and looking healthy so far. It was a very poor second rainy season, which meant that overall throughout the region farming had suffered. The main functional achievement was to launch ETFE officially via an AGM, which took place over three days. The first day was a getting to know one another. We were ASOMO GENEVIEVE (Director), NICHOLAS JAMES (Director) OLUGA FRANCIS (Secretary) EKOTU PETER (member), ESULE SARAH (Treasurer) OLAL JOSHUA (Chairman), ACURO HELLEN (member), and Ebonyu William (Observer). We discussed the set-up and the constitution. Nick did an overview, making it confirmed that ETFE was a registered business and operating as a ‘social enterprise’. The second day Asomo delivered an excellent presentation of the various achievements and plans for ETFE. She explained the website and how it worked. The bigger focus went on to the Executive Summary, which had been shared among the management committee. Asomo also introduced the project “Live for Soil; Soil to Live”. This involves receiving and hosting visitors to the site. More will be explained in a blog piece in January. The third day was a little more informal but also more like a learning process together, where we all revised the notions of what ETFE and agroecology stood for. Who were the thinkers behind agroecology? What exactly is a successful enterprise? And the last session focused on links between the ‘social impact’ element and the ongoing research possibilities at the site worked on by Ebonyu family. Nick also managed to extend his research into local and indigenous knowledge via interviews with Acuro Hellen, Ebonyu William and Pastor Francis. In writing, we hear that Pastor Francis is unwell. This is a heartfelt wish for his swift recovery.
Thank you for reading and hope that the project remains of interest to you in the future.