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The specialist international beekeeping organisation
People with disabilities in Uganda have fewer opportunities to make a living, are marginalised and often left out by their communities. They are generally poorer than people without disabilities.
People with disabilities can, and do, keep bees. Beekeeping provides income for many thousands of rural families in Uganda. We want to bring these benefits to people with disabilities, so that they too can meet their needs and achieve their aspirations of having economically successful livelihoods.
Previous research, funded by the National Lottery in 2018, found that people with disabilities were often simply missed out from training programmes "Disabled people are excluded because sometimes they cannot travel to the training venue – or no one invited them to come”, Patrick Unegu, Nebbi.
To address this, the project "Beekeeping to economically empower people with disabilities in Uganda" is being run in partnership with our long-standing partner, The Uganda Apiculture National Development Organisation (TUNADO). With funding from The National Lottery Community Fund, we will help people with hearing and visual impairments to begin beekeeping.
Blindness and deafness are not in themselves barriers to beekeeping but people with these disabilities do need well-designed and adapted support. The best type of support for a blind or partially-sighted person might be to receive instruction from someone with the same abilities.
We are presently working to identify and bring together people who have demonstrated that they, with their disability, are keeping bees successfully already. We will run workshops for beneficiaries and develop training materials, including films and other resources, to develop livelihood opportunities for people with disabilities through beekeeping.
Kibora Francis lost his sight in 2017. He has since learned to keep bees, helping him to begin to regain his independence. He hopes to grow his apiary further and provide for his family. Hear his story:
Jennifer Oloya lost her sight over a decade ago. She is now a very successful beekeeper, so much so that she is helping others with visual impairments in Uganda to learn how to change their lives with beekeeping, too.