Empower and Care Organization (EACO)
Empower and Care Organization (EACO) was founded in 2004 at the community level and was registered as a Community Based Organization (CBO) in 2006 (registration number MG/2006/10/294). EACO was established to address the limited educational and economic opportunities that exist for vulnerable groups of women and children in Mukono County. EACO’s vision is that, by implementing activities that provide these opportunities, it will contribute to the reduction of poverty and HIV/AIDS in the Mukono community.
EACO Services for the communities it works with AND CONTRIBUTION TO THE COMMUNITY:
Vocational and Life Skills Training: Targets vulnerable women, particularly widows and individuals living with HIV/AIDS, OVCs, and grandmothers caring for children. It seeks to address the lack of economic opportunity for these vulnerable populations by providing training and individualized instruction in entrepreneurship, marketing techniques for small businesses, microfinance, and the implementation of income-generating activities (IGAs) including: farming, vegetable growing, coffee growing, cattle keeping, bee-keeping, chicken rearing, piggery, mushroom growing, tailoring and design, arts and crafts, and hair dressing and styling.
Restoring Hope for the Marginalized: This program targets grandmothers and orphans and vulnerable children (OVCs) living with their grandmothers. Major activities include: HIV/AIDS sensitization; scholastic materials and midday school meals to OVCs; “Top-up” of school fees as needed through sponsorships.
Sexual/Reproductive Health: This program focuses primarily on counseling and guidance, educational trainings, and community outreach related to HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), family planning, and life skills planning. In order to implement this program, EACO works with HOPACAM at Mukono Health Center to administer free voluntary counseling and testing for HIV/AIDS and other STDs and provides HIV+ individuals with ARV's. EACO volunteers then make regular home visits to those who have tested positive in order to supply them with foodstuffs that have been donated to EACO. Through this program, EACO regularly visits 50 HIV+ individuals in the community and provides them with donated foodstuffs so they are able to consume nutritious foods that will help them to stay healthy and strong.
Water and Sanitation: With this programme, EACO looks at the health, water, and sanitation of the community. Here EACO has managed to put up four boreholes for the community of Namanganga, Kasala, Kyabakade and Lugali village all in Kyampisi sub county in Mukono District as well as building a latrine for one of the elderly. We all know how access to clean and safe water with increased sanitation will improve the lives of each individual so we involve more women and children.
COMMUNITY SUPPORT TO EACO
EACO is grateful for the tremendous amount of support it receives from the community, including Local Council Leaders (LCs), churches, other organizations, and individual community members. The LC II openly acknowledges the positive impact EACO has made in the community in relation to poverty alleviation and HIV/AIDS and is eager to lend her support to the organization.
EACO receives support in several different ways from individual community members. Though EACO contracts professional trainers to conduct its income generation and entrepreneurship training workshops, volunteer trainers from the community work alongside the professional trainers to make participant home visits where participants are provided with materials, instruction, and support in implementing income generating activities. EACO currently has seven permanent volunteers serving in this role, all of whom are retirees with a professional background in agriculture. EACO also receives volunteers on a seasonal basis who help with tasks that do not require specialized professional skills, such as sorting and distributing donated clothes to OVCs. Other support EACO receives from individual community members includes project participant contribution of the labor necessary to construct the structures needed to implement their IGA, such as pig pens and chicken coups. EACO also receives donations from individuals in the community, both in-kind – for instance, user rights to the kibanja used for the EACO demonstration site and foodstuffs for HIV+ community members – as well as monetary donations. IGA= Income Generating Activities,
OVC= Orphans and Vulnerable children,
Other funding sources: International Justice Mission (IJM) US Embassy International Volunteers Individual Donor Members Contribution Income Generating Activities (Fundraising) . Just A drop
Organization’s overall direction in the next 5 years.
We currently depend entirely on funding from external organizations and donations from individuals. While this is extremely generous income such as this is generally on an ad-hoc basis so we have plans to generate income from projects such as bee keeping, vegetable farming, tourism, added value products by creating sustainable businesses which generate an income for the individuals contributing to the organization.