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Enel Green Power gives renewable energy to new paediatric surgery hospital in Uganda
19 February 2017 - Enel Green Power (EGP) is participating in the project of Emergency [an NGO] and the architect Renzo Piano for the construction of a paediatric surgery hospital in Entebbe, Uganda, which is planned to be a model of paediatric excellence, environmental sustainability, and energy independence in Africa. EGP will provide 2,600 thin-film photovoltaic [solar] modules manufactured at its 3Sun factory in Catania (Italy), for a total of 289.24 kWp (kilowatt peak). The plant, which can be connected to the local medium voltage distribution grid, will give the new hospital energy autonomy and sustainability. The photovoltaic system will be installed on the roof of the hospital in such a way as to ensure its integration with the hospital's architecture, and it will also shelter the underlying structures from sunlight and rain. (more)

Uganda starts up first solar power plant in bid to tap renewables
12 December 2016 - Uganda on Monday [12 December] started up its first grid-connected, 10 megawatt solar power plant as the east African country moves to tap its renewable energy resources and expand its electricity generation capacity. The plant, a vast field of some 32,600 photovoltaic panels, is located in Soroti in northeastern Uganda . . . (more)

In Uganda, solar power plant amid African bush inspires hope
9 August 2016 - A solar plant is being constructed in Soroti, Uganda, about 300 kilometers east of the capital, Kampala. In this electricity-starved rural part of Uganda, men ride bicycles several kilometers (miles) to the nearest market town simply to charge their phones. That should change with the construction nearby of one of the largest solar plants in sub-Saharan Africa, where two-thirds of the population is without electricity. (more)

Life after Kony: How Uganda's women are rebuilding their lives
2 August 2016 - A women's group called Warocho Kwan Wwawa, which means 'renovate our lives' in Acholi is helping in Uganda. Set up by the UK-based charity Send a Cow, best known for its initiatives to help smallholder farmers through training, seeds, and livestock loans, the charity also employs members of the local community and social workers to help people in northern Uganda rehabilitate and reintegrate into everyday life. In addition to the money made from farming and supplying milk to the Gulu Women's Dairy Co-operative, Warocho Kwan Wwawa has contracts to make uniforms for two primary schools. (more)

Four firms to build 20 MW solar power plants in Uganda
11 December 2014 - Uganda said on Wednesday four foreign and domestic firms would build two solar power plants, with a total capacity of 20 megawatts (MW) as it seeks to develop its renewable energy potential. The state-run Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) said the two solar plants would be established in the Soroti and Tororo districts, in Uganda's eastern region. Benon Mutambi, ERA's chief executive, said the plants were suitable for Uganda because they were quick to implement and could be built close to consumers, reducing transmission losses. (more)

Amid poverty, US surgeons saving lives in Uganda
26 August 2014 - A group of American doctors are taking part in a 'surgery camp' during which they also train local doctors. Scores of hopeful patients crowded the hallways of Mulago Hospital in the Ugandan capital of Kampala this past week. The operations, which would cost up to $20,000 in the United States, are free. Dr Michael Haglund, a professor of surgery and of neurobiology at Duke University, first visited Mulago in 2007. Dr Haglund decided to improve Mulago's neurosurgery capacity, which has required fundraising and spending his own money. Dr Haglund and his Duke University team have come to Mulago nine times since his first visit, bringing 45 tonnes of donated or used equipment worth $6.5 million. (more)

Mobile phone alerts help Uganda nab forest criminals
25 July 2014 - A forest monitoring system that uses text messaging on mobile phones has helped the Ugandan government to intercept six cartels involved in forest crimes, within just four months of its launch. The community-based forest monitoring tool allows anyone who witnesses a suspected illegal activity in a Ugandan forest to send an SMS message describing what they have seen and where to a common code: 6006. (more)

Ugandan capital to switch all facilities to solar power
20 June 2014 - The Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) is to switch all its facilities to solar power in a bid to save on energy, says its executive director Jennifer Musisi. She disclosed this in a presentation to the technical experts meeting on urban environment held on the sidelines of the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn, Germany recently. The meeting attracted experts from cities across the world to share experiences on how their activities address climate change. Tokyo, Lima, Bogota and Kampala showcased their innovations at the meeting, which was also attended by delegates from several agencies including UN Habitant, Global Environment Facility and Green Climate Finance. Over the next five years, KCCA planned to install up to 20,000 solar stands in the city. Solar-powered street lights have been installed along a number of roads in Kampala. (more)

Ugandan writer wins UK's 2014 Commonwealth Short Story Prize
14 June 2014 - Ugandan writer Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi has won the 2014 Commonwealth Short Story Prize, organizers said on Friday. Contest judges praised 'Let's Tell the Story Properly' for its grace, breadth, and taking risks and selected it as the top story from nearly 4,000 entries from writers in 53 countries. 'This is a dream,' said Makumbi, who is based in England. 'For Uganda, once described as a literary desert, it shows how the country's literary landscape is changing,' she said in a statement. (more)

Krochet Kids knits together sustainable jobs in Uganda and Peru
23 March 2014 - In Uganda and Peru, a team of lifelong friends is turning a love of crocheting into jobs for impoverished women. Krochet Kids International trains and employs women in both countries to craft contemporary apparel for sale in the United States. Krochet Kids' model creates sustainable jobs by teaching textile skills like crochet or knitting, and attempts to help women permanently escape poverty through additional business training and mentoring. (more)


Success of Maharishi's Programmes
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Spotlight on the TM programme for women in Uganda
28 October 2016 - There have been recent leaps in progress for women and children in Uganda through the Transcendental Meditation programme. Based on the foundation of 650 women who learned TM through a training project at the United Women's Platform for Empowerment and Development (UWOPED), TM clubs for 280 of their children have now been established. In addition, the organization teaching Transcendental Meditation for women was invited to address the general assembly of the National Union of Nurses and Midwives about TM as a practical tool for building resiliency under stress and avoiding burnout. The assembly consisted of leading administrators from hospitals across the country. (more)

The transforming experiences of women in Uganda who learned Transcendental Meditation
9 August 2016 - Brenda Nakalembe, founder of Uganda's United Women's Platform for Empowerment and Development recognized the potential for the Transcendental Meditation technique to help fulfill her mission to empower women. More than 600 women and 200 children have learned TM through the program at UWOPED. At one beginning phase of TM training for 80 UWOPED mothers, Leslee Goldstein, who has many years experience in educational administration and teaching TM, was excited to conduct her PhD research through the Uganda TM women's organization and evaluate the benefits of the TM training. Leslee's daughter Alena added a video component to the project. 'When my mother asked me to be her assistant and document the research project with a short film, I knew I had to say ''yes,''' Alena said. On the project's second phase, filming and evaluating the women's group after three months of practicing TM, Alena said, 'Something that struck me the second trip, was how connected, open and friendly these women had become with each other.' Brenda Nakalembe added, '. . . mothers are experiencing greater emotional stability, less anger, clearer thinking, happiness, and well-being, and they are more motivated and engaged in taking care of themselves and their children. It is quite remarkable, and they report that their families are more harmonious and that they have less conflict with their neighbors.' (more)

The Maharishi Secondary School for Girls in Uganda
29 July 2016 - Maharishi Secondary School for Girls in Uganda was licensed to operate in 2009 and became fully accredited to Senior Four level just 14 months after opening. The school was again accredited to add Senior Five and Six in 2013. Education at the school is thought of as highly unique - the curriculum offers Consciousness-Based Education. Focused on the student gaining the knowledge rather than teaching, Consciousness-Based Education cultures the student on the level of consciousness as well as on the level of intellectual understanding. The result is that knowledge is gained from inside and outside the individual. When asked what TM had given her, one Ugandan student said, 'I feel free from stress and anxiety. I feel greater happiness, which has even spread to my family.' (more)

Growing up enlightened in a Uganda orphanage
16 February 2016 - 'This is a story repeated thousands of times by now in different schools and communities around the world,' writes Graham de Freitas, describing the transformation created in the lives of children and adults at an orphanage in Uganda after many learned Transcendental Meditation. 'This simple, systematic method of quieting the mind twice a day allowed each of them to begin to live with more calmness and balance.' The organization has provided food, shelter, education, and basic medical care to hundreds of orphaned children. 'As stresses and tensions have been released from peoples' lives, the whole community has begun to rise above its problems and to enjoy life more and more,' Dr de Freitas says. (more)

Bringing Smiles to the Faces of Women in Uganda
10 October 2014 - Helen Creighton writes in Transcendental Meditation for Women's blog, 'Severe poverty and conflict in developing countries is the norm for so many women--the challenges wrought by the impact of stress are extremely apparent and have a damaging ripple effect on every aspect of their lives. I had sometimes wondered what effect TM would have on women in such circumstances. The effect of TM is actually quite profound.' Women in the organization, African Women and Girls Organization for Total Knowledge-Uganda, who began TM became better at dealing with the challenges in their lives, exhibiting greater ability to make choices, take initiative, persevere, and be resilient in the face of obstacles. (more)

African refugee describes healing power of Transcendental Meditation: 'I'm free - I'm a free woman'
18 September 2014 - Sudanese refugee Esperance Ndozi, who suffered greatly from posttraumatic stress (PTS), describes the dramatic positive changes she experienced soon after learning Transcendental Meditation. Her comments appear in a recent article in New Age Journal. (more)

The healing power of Transcendental Meditation
14 September 2014 - The life of Esperance Ndozi, a Sudanese refugee who fled with her children to Uganda, improved dramatically after the African PTSD Relief organization offered her the opportunity to learn Transcendental Meditation. Esperance suffered terribly from posttraumatic stress (PTS), with flashbacks, persistent fear, depression, and insomnia. 'Ndozi was not alone in the challenges that she faced,' writes Krista Noble in New Age Journal. 'It is estimated that 100 million Africans suffer from PTS.' (more)

African refugee describes healing power of Transcendental Meditation: 'Wonderful for me, and the whole world should know that'
6 June 2014 - Esperance Ndozi, a Sudanese refugee who fled with her children to Uganda, suffered terribly from posttraumatic stress (PTS), with flashbacks, persistent fear, depression, and insomnia. 'Ndozi was not alone in the challenges that she faced,' writes Krista Noble in New Age Journal. 'It is estimated that 100 million Africans suffer from PTS. These men and women have experienced the trauma of war, terrorism, violence, abuse or natural disasters.' Esperance's life improved dramatically after she learned Transcendental Meditation through the African PTSD Relief organization. Within a week she was sleeping better and felt deep relaxation, inner peace, happiness, and freedom from fear. Previous studies found Transcendental Meditation effective in reducing PTS in military veterans. New published research on Congolese war refugees corroborates Esperance's experience, showing profound relief from PTS symptoms 10 days after learning the practice. (more)

Mbale, Uganda: At Maharishi Secondary School for Girls, students create coherence for their nation
1 May 2014 - At Maharishi Secondary School for Girls in Mbale, Uganda, in addition to a full academic curriculum all students practise Transcendental Meditation together twice a day. Students and administrators alike find that the TM technique allows the thinking mind to settle down and experience deep inner silence and calm, while the physiology gains deep rest, dissolving the effects of stress. Relief from stress is critical for Ugandans after decades of political and economic turmoil that exposed the majority of the population, including the young, to traumatic emotional and physical experiences. More than half of the girls have now also learned the advanced Transcendental Meditation Sidhi Programme, becoming a coherence-creating group for their nation. (more)

Africa: Children thrive with Transcendental Meditation at EDAPO school in Uganda
21 April 2014 - There are 600 children in the Economic Development and AIDS Prevention Organization (EDAPO) school in Uganda. Two videos about the organization and the children it serves were recently edited and released. In Meet the Children, Mr Mark Mugabe, founder and director of EDAPO, introduces the organization that was started in 2006, and two teachers. The second video, Meet the children at EDAPO, introduces the children, showing different aspects of their daily routine, which are similar to those at other schools. But 'there is something different' about these children--they practise Transcendental Meditation. (more)


Flops
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60,000 Congolese flee to Uganda after rebel attack
14 July 2013 - More than 60,000 Congolese have fled to Uganda after a rebel attack on a town near the border in a continuing influx that is stretching humanitarian capacities, an aid group said Sunday. The Uganda Red Cross has already registered 41,000 refugees and that 20,000 more are yet to go through that process, said spokeswoman Catherine Ntabadde. The refugees are entering Uganda though the frontier district of Bundibugyo and many have found temporary shelter on the campuses of three schools there, she said. The refugee influx continues three days after a Ugandan-led rebel group attacked Kamango town and killed some people on Thursday, according to Ugandan military officials who are concerned the rebels are about to launch a major assault on Ugandan territory. (more)

The high cost of hunger in Uganda
20 June 2013 - Malnutrition costs Uganda an estimated US$899 million annually -- as much as 5.6 percent of its GDP -- according to findings of a new report. 'Hunger and under-nutrition are both a cause and effect of poverty,' Sory Ouane, WFP's country director, said at the report's launch. 'Cutting hunger and achieving food and nutrition security in Africa is not only one of the most effective means of reducing vulnerability and enhancing the resilience of national economies, it also produces high returns for social and economic development.' Using data from 2009, the report estimated that child mortality associated with under-nutrition reduced Uganda's labour force by 3.8 per cent. This represents over 943 million working hours lost due to an absent workforce, costing the country nearly $317 million. In the educational sector, the study estimated that 7 per cent of repeated school years in Uganda are associated with stunting, representing 134,000 repetitions and an estimated cost of $9.5 million to the government and families. Treating clinical conditions related to malnutrition cost Uganda $254 million, while losses in productivity reached $201 million in manual sectors like agriculture and $116 million in non-manual activities. (more)

Politics, bribery charges swirl around Ugandan oil
18 May 2013 - Uganda (AP) - Even before the first drops flow, Uganda's oil sector is beset by bribery allegations against officials, tax-related cases abroad that cost the government millions in legal fees, and the alleged interference of a president whose firm control of the sector worries transparency campaigners. Uganda, which has confirmed oil deposits of about 3.5 billion barrels, wants to extract at least 1.2 billion barrels over the next three decades. That figure could rise when more oil blocks are put up for exploration later this year, potentially making Uganda one of Africa's top oil producers. But some experts and analysts worry that the country got off to a false start and remains too politically unstable to avoid some of the mistakes made by other oil-rich but otherwise poor countries. Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has reserved for himself the right to have the final say before any deals are signed with oil companies, saying that policy is to ensure the country's interests are always protected. But some critics say the president's close involvement is unhelpful to a country that needs to focus on building credible, transparent institutions to manage its oil wealth whether or not Museveni is around. (more)

Uganda government intimidating rights groups, HRW says
21 August 2012 - Rights groups in Uganda are facing increased harassment and intimidation from government officials, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said on Tuesday. The New York-based HRW said in a report that rising hostility from the government was making it difficult for civil society groups to freely conduct their work. President Yoweri Museveni, widely expected to seek a fifth term in office in 2016, has often criticised non-governmental organisations, accusing them of sabotaging government projects and representing the interests of foreign governments. In May Uganda accused British charity Oxfam of bringing disrepute to Museveni after it published a report detailing extensive land grabs by the government in alliance with a foreign company. (more)

Uganda: 100 women die in childbirth every week
13 June 2012 - More than 100 women die during childbirth each week in Uganda, a heartbreaking statistic that has energized activists to go to the Supreme Court in a bid to force the government to put more resources toward maternal health care to prevent the wave of deaths. Most of these deaths happen in villages where bad roads and poverty make it difficult for women to reach health centres. Even when they get there, the available care is poor. The Ugandan government employs only about half of the health professionals the country needs, according to Samuel Lyomoki, a lawmaker and physician. If the number rose to 65 per cent, Lyomoki said, Uganda's maternal mortality rate would fall substantially. Lyomoki said Uganda needs to hire 5,000 more medical workers and $60 million must be added to the health budget to accomplish that. Analysts say this money is available in a country where millions are lost every year through corruption and wasteful spending. Last year Uganda spent more than $700 million to acquire Russian-made fighter jets and military hardware when the country was not at war. (more)

Uganda could be next hit by malnutrition, UN warns
2 August 2011 - Uganda could be the next country hit by alarming malnutrition rates due to drought which has already sparked famine in southern Somalia and hunger in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Djibouti, the United Nations warned on Tuesday. Pockets of food insecurity have already been detected in drought-hit northern areas of Uganda, east Africa's third largest economy, the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said. Prices for maize, Uganda's main crop, went up by 67 per cent between June and July due to a delay in the harvest and the effect of greater demand from neighbouring Kenya and southern Sudan. Famine has been declared in two regions of southern Somalia but may soon engulf as many as six more regions of the lawless nation. (more)

Uganda rebels continue central Africa attacks
24 May 2011 - A coalition of nearly 40 human rights groups called on the US to step up efforts to fight against a brutal Ugandan-led rebel group that has intensified its attacks in central Africa, especially in Congo's volatile northeast. Last May, President Barack Obama's administration signed into law an act that commits the US to help civilians threatened by the LRA. 'Many of us believed that President Obama's commitment to addressing the LRA threat would finally help stop our suffering,' said Abbe Benoit Kinalegu of the Catholic Justice and Peace Commission in Dungu. 'Yet one year later, we continue to live in fear as the LRA's attacks have shown no signs of decreasing.' The group Human Rights Watch also pinned some responsibility for atrocities on Congo's army. (more)

Uganda: Riots erupt leaving 2 dead after brutal arrest of top opposition politician
29 April 2011 - Army troops and police fired live bullets at rioting demonstrators Friday, and at least two people were killed and 120 wounded in the largest anti-government protest in sub-Saharan Africa this year. The breakout of violence came one day after a brutal takedown of the country's top opposition politician, Kizza Besigye. Police smashed through the window of Besigye's vehicle with the butt of a gun and doused him with tear gas at close range before bundling him into the back of a pickup truck and speeding off. 'They arrested him like a chicken thief. We cannot allow such things to continue. Museveni must go,' said Brown Ndese, one of the protesters. Uganda is a young country, with half its nearly 35 million citizens under 15. The average yearly income is just $1,200, though many here have hopes -- and fears -- over newly discovered oil that will soon be pumped. An oil curse has befallen other African countries, providing more incentive for corrupt leaders to remain in power in order to steal from public coffers. (more)

Ugandan LRA rebels abduct, kill hundreds - group
12 August 2010 - Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army rebels have abducted 697 people in central Africa in the past 18 months, killing many of them, according to a human rights group investigation. The group said these attacks have had a 'devastating impact' on communities, forcing up to 74,000 people to flee territories in southeastern Central African Republic and neighbouring northeastern Congo. The Human Rights Watch findings underlined the scale of the catastrophe that the United States is seeking to tackle with new legislation that requires it to develop a strategy to bring to justice Joseph Kony's LRA sect, which has relied on mysticism and violence in its fight against Uganda over 23 years. (more)

Uganda - Key political risks to watch
12 July 2010 - Suspected Somali Islamists carried out two bomb attacks late on Sunday in the Ugandan capital that killed at least 64 people as they watched the World Cup final. Uganda will become an oil-producing nation in 2011, allowing it to reduce its budget dependence on foreign aid and improve poor infrastructure. East Africa's third largest economy is seen growing between 7-8 per cent in 2010/11 from 5.6 per cent in 2009/10. Here are some of the factors to watch: (more)

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