Project Summary

IMG 20230407 WA0001 1

Nakivale Refugee Camp is some 300 kilometres south west of Kampala the capitol of Uganda. Nakivale;is one of several refugee camps in Uganda with a population totalling some 130,000 refugees, mostly from the Congo, Sudan and Somalia. The objective of the project is to provide and support self sustainable income producing and educational opportunities for the refugees. These may include such opportunities as the provision of Laptop Computers for training and educational purposes, sewing machines to produce clothing and goods for sale and other opportunities as they arise.

Sponsored By: Rotary Club of Southern Districts, District 9423

Endorsed By: Rotary Club of Kiwatule, District 9213

Other Partners: Rotary Club of Kiwatule, District 9213


If you wish to support or sponsor this project you can make fully tax deductible donations through the Nakivale Project on the RAWCS website.


Project Description

Map showing Nakivale Refugee Settlement location

Although man refugees in the area have been living there for several years, recent conflicts in nearby countries are increasing the number of arrivals per day. One of the greatest struggles for displaced men and women in residence, is the development of new, marketable skills.Nakivale is a regugee settlement located in the southwest of Uganda near the Tanzanian boarder. One of the oldest refugee settlements in Uganda, it spreads over approximately 180 square kilometres and hosts over 120,000 refugees from nearby war-torn countries including Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, Somalia, Rwanda, Ethiopia and Eritrea.

In October 2022, the Rotary Club of Southern Districts' International Committee, chaired by Robert Da Prato, determined to supply the Nakivale reguee camp training centre with 13 sewing machines, sewing materials and 25 - 35 laptop computers to assist residents to build their skills. Though this sounds like a simple goal, it was far from straight forward to achieve. For a start, there is no electricity at the samp and the cost to install is prohibitive.

But, just when prospects seemed bleak, our luck turned. The deciding factor was the soucing of manual, treadle-operated sewing machines like the old fashioned Singer one your grandmother probably had (collecting dust in a garage near you), which of course need no electricity!

So, partnering with members of the Kiwatule Rotary Club in Kampala (who actually sponsor a Rotaract Club within the camp itself), the International Committee arranged for purchase and delivery of manual sewing machines - together with bales of cloth, scissors, thread, etc. via a local supplier. And just like that, the Nakivale Sewing School was up and running! With 40 to 50 students, tutored by local experts (courtesy of Rotary Kiwatule), burning though the intial fabric stocks supplied, we have recently provided additional funds for upkeep of the machines and some more materials.

Now Robert and his team are on target to move forward with Stage 2 of the project, which will involve the provision of a solar panel power supply unit to charge 30 to 35 refurbished laptops, sourced at a cost of just $100 each.

Nakivale Slideshow

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