Mrs. Namazzi Deborah Kakooza; a mother inspiring many in Nabusanke School Community
Mrs. Namazzi Deborah Kakooza is a treasurer under Nabusanke Sustainable Organic mothers’ group. She is aged 57years and married to Rev. Canon Kakooza who has served the church of Uganda for 40years. As a mother, she faces a daily task of catering for a family of ten members (2 care takers and 7 grandchildren) with nutritious food.
Mrs. Kakooza and Husband got transferred from their former church community in Bulamu-Muduuma Mawokota north to Kawala Nabusanke church of Uganda in the same district of Mpigi in 2020. However, the outbreak of COVID 19 pandemic had made a challenging situation in this new area. Food was inadequate, yet the neighbors had less to sell and moreover the land available was small and unproductive. The situation was worsened by the internal conflicts among church members which had already affected social relations among the congregation and the husband
Because of the bigger task at hand to look for food for the family, Mrs. Kakooza embarked farming regardless of the poor soils. She narrates that “God was by her side” the bananas gave convincing yields from which she managed to sell and also shared some with the neighbors including her affiliate Nabusanke primary school. This facilitated reconciliation and love within the church community hence improving on the social relationships that had previously been compromised.
With financial support from HORIZONT3000, AFIRD introduced a sustainable Agriculture project in Mpigi in 2021. Nabusanke primary school was part of the beneficiary communities.
Being a humble woman who had always supported Nabusanke primary school programs Mrs. Kakooza was nominated by the school to be trained in sustainable Agriculture and permaculture design concepts. She later -
spearheaded the formation of Nabusanke Sustainable Organic mothers’ group in 2021- a group that was formed to support the mothers of Nabusanke primary school in increasing household food and income security through sustainable Agriculture.
Having adopted the techniques and principle of permaculture; Mrs. Kakooza managed to transform her small piece of land into a food forest- with kitchen gardens that comprised of a diversity of functional plants.
At first, Rev. Kakooza the husband didn’t welcome the farming system- naming it “a bushy and compound destructive system” Nevertheless, Mrs. Kakooza didn’t give up- she began demonstrating the small garden designs around the church land and this invited many women attention! She became a roll modal to many women since they started learning from her work! Her home gardens began producing abundant vegetables from which she supplied to her family.
This influenced the husband Rev. Kakooza and ever since this experience, he has devoted part of his career to share the knowledge of sustainable Agriculture using the church. He has established demonstration gardens around the church so as to pass on the skill to the church congregation. He also supports the wife (Mrs. Kakooza) in the garden work and trainings to the women and youths around the community.
According to Mrs. Kakooza, she has utilized every inch of her land to grow more and better food! Her compound has become a small agri-hub with different species of medicinal plants and vegetables such; collards, chives, onions, night shed, gooseberry. She finds the farming system more adoptive to the unfavorable weather conditions (with longer droughts and uneven spread rains) around the equator
In conclusion, Mrs. Kakooza applauds the sustainable Agriculture project for having raised her esteem as a woman. According to her, helping many women find healthy food for their families means a lot to her. In addition, having a contribution to her household need and supporting her husband to take care of the family is a big goal for her. Since the husband (Rev. Canon Kakooza) intend to retire in 2023, the family has designed a plan to set a sustainable Agriculture family farm in the home district of Luwero central Uganda.
By Nabunya Dalia
Deborah harvesting her goose berry from her garden