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Female farmers in Uganda.


Cordaid has been active in Uganda for over 25 years. Our programmes focus on humanitarian assistance, sustainable agri-food systems, health care, and education.

Uganda is a young country. About 78% of the population is below the age of 30. However, this enormous potential remains largely underutilised. The high poverty rates are primarily a rural phenomenon, where large families rely on farming as their main source of income.

Many young people have migrated from rural to urban areas, which has put a strain on the nation’s educational system and labour markets. Safety and health issues, like teenage pregnancies and sexual and gender-based violence, are also common issues.


Results & Indicators

  • 40,925 people reached in HEROES 4 Gender Transformative Action programme (2023)

  • 50 primary schools contracted for performance-based financing (2023)

  • 9,035 people reached in the Skilling in Agripreneurship for Increased Youth Employment programme (2023)

  • 852 jobs created by small and medium-sized enterprises (2023)


Skilling in Agripreneurship for Increased Youth Employment
In 2017, Cordaid, in partnership with ZOA and War Child Holland, began a bold journey to improve agri-business skilling for youth in West Nile. The region accommodates a high number of refugees.

Many of them are young people who remain unemployed and need skills, competencies and work experience to facilitate their employment in agri-business. In partnership with AVSI, Cordaid has now introduced the Skilling in Agripreneurship for Increased Youth Employment (SAY) project.

SAY aims to support 4,000 youth from both the refugee and host communities in the Bidibidi refugee settlement.

Inclusive Vocational Education for Entrepreneurship Perspectives in Agriculture
Cordaid, in partnership with CINOP, concluded a community agriculture skilling project in December 2022 which prepares youths to start businesses in agriculture.

In West Nile, Cordaid strengthened the roles of four technical vocational education and training institutions by integrating them into crucial agricultural value chains. This resulted in enhanced training availability and quality, which raised practical knowledge and increased entrepreneurial success in the communities.

The project recognises access to formal vocational training centres for youth as a means to increase productivity for the business sector but also gives young people the skills they need to find stable employment and a higher income.

Waste to Clean Air Circular Loop
In partnership with Muni University, Wageningen University and Research, SEMiLLA Sanitation, SkillEd and Caritas Arua, Cordaid implements the Waste to Clean Energy project. It addresses the need for sanitation, affordable and sustainable energy and aims to increase access to renewable energy for refugees and host populations residing in and around the Imvepi refugee settlement.

The project will achieve this through the construction of a waste treatment plant to convert the faecal sludge of 15,000 inhabitants into 90 cubic meters (about the volume of a one-car garage) of methane gas daily.

When completed and fully operational, the project will increase employment opportunities for youth by providing labour for operating and maintaining the treatment plant and selling biogas, compost, and tree seedlings.

It will also decrease the groundwater pollution caused by the pit latrines, reduce health risks associated with air pollution caused by cooking using firewood, reduce the walking distance in search of energy sources, and reduce conflicts over wood between refugees and host communities.

In the long run, the project will improve the local food system, environment and local economy.

The Future Makers Youth Agribusiness project
Cordaid, in partnership with Youth Business International, implements a two-year project aimed at supporting young entrepreneurs to revive, strengthen and build business resilience following the diverse effect of COVID-19.

The project targets 700 young entrepreneurs in Lira, Nebbi and Zombo districts. The businesses include direct farming, value addition, agricultural transportation, agricultural produce and trade, and input shops. In Zombo, we focus on the coffee value chain. The project is part of the Future Makers global initiative to tackle inequality by promoting greater economic inclusion for disadvantaged young people, funded by Standard Chartered Bank.  

The Highflyers programme focuses on offering support to underserved ‘high-flying’ young entrepreneurs to grow and scale their businesses. Highflyers are defined as young entrepreneurs aged 18 to 35 who are running a business and want it to grow.

The support we offer includes training on business development, specialised skills support, mentoring, and guidance in gaining access to finance.

In partnership with YBI, Cordaid tracks the progress of the participating highflyers over two years to evaluate the impact of the support and identify additional barriers and needs. Based on these insights, we make recommendations to support over fifty Highflyers and create new jobs for their fellow youth.

Youth-Led COVID-19 Response
In November 2022, Cordaid concluded the implementation of a healthcare project in the West Nile region of Uganda. The Youth-Led COVID-19 Response complements interventions implemented by Uganda’s Ministry of Health and other partners in responding to the pandemic, sexual and gender-based violence, mental health challenges, and its imminent effects.

The project integrated access to essential sexual and reproductive health and rights services and mental health and psychosocial support into the COVID-19 response, in the districts of Arua, Terego, and Adjumani.

Making Health Systems Work for Adolescents and Youth
The Making Health Systems Work for Young People in Uganda (also known as the E-Voucher project) aims to promote adolescent sexual health through the provision of services and information. It combines 6 modular interventions: adolescent sexual reproductive health and rights, health system strengthening, results-based financing, comprehensive sexuality education, data analytics, and mental health and psychosocial support.

HEROES 4 Gender Transformative Action
The HEROES intervention takes place in low-income rural areas, covering nine districts by a consortium made up of four partners; Cordaid, Mifumi, Amref Health Africa, and the International Center for Research on Women. Cordaid leads the project and implements results-based financing in 18 health facilities.

Water Sanitation and Hygiene Services for All
The objective of the project was to ensure that the refugees and host communities in the Kyangwali refugee settlement have Improved and sustainable access to sufficient clean water supply, and sanitation by the end of 2022. 

The project has been responding to a refugee crisis in the western part of Uganda and the intervention reached 8,870 people.

The project has made significant contributions in a bid to achieve the UN standards of 20 litres per person per day through the construction of a solar motorised water supply system.


In the Central, North and West Nile regions, we support low-income farmers and producer organisations to increase economic opportunities improving and sustaining their livelihoods.

In eastern Uganda, Cordaid implements systems-strengthening projects for equitable access to quality basic services in health care and education in the districts of Kamuli, Bukwo, Budaka, Namayingo, Iganga and Kalangala, and in northern Uganda, the districts of Arua, Terego Adjumani and Yumbe.

In the districts of Bugiri, Mayuge, Iganga and Namayingo Mbale, Budaka, Bukwo, and Kween, as well as in Central Uganda Kalangala, we work on sexual and reproductive health and rights.


Cordaid works in Uganda with both national and international partners including the Ugandan ministries of Health, Education and Sports, Agriculture, Animal Industries and Fisheries, Gender, Labour and Social Development, Land, Housing and Urban Development, and Local Government, AVSI, SRHR Alliance, Gesundes Afrika, Amref Health Afrika Uganda, TVET Institutes, RUFI, Enterprise Uganda, IUCN, ZOA, War Child NL, Rikolto Mezzanine, Nilecom, MFIs, SACCOS, NIRAS, PELUM, Caritas​.

Recent donors include the World Bank, DFID, UNICEF, Gesundes Afrika, Dutch MFA, Dutch Embassy, BMZ, DRA, Youth Business International, UNCDF, DFCD, Standard Chartered Foundation, IUCN, and WFP.


Plot 12B, Faraday Road
Bugolobi, Nakawa Division
Next to MUBS Annex Bugolobi

The Uganda office is the seat of our East and South Africa Cluster.

Country Manager and Director of the East and South Africa Cluster
Heleen van der Beek
Email: [email protected]

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