Mutuuzo said that 200 million shillings was availed to some parishes of Bunyangabu district and that each parish was allocated 30 million shillings revolving fund to be paid back within a period of six months.
The newly introduced community development program has started contributing capital for economic transformation in Bunyangabu district.
Under the program, a group of 30 members with a common income-generating activity is availed funds by the government.
The new fund supplements the already existing government grants and programs such as the youth livelihood fund, women empowerment fund among others.
Peace Mutuuzo the state minister for gender and culture who is also the Woman Member of Parliament for Bunyangabu district said in an interview that the program was launched with the aim of improving the livelihood of communities at the parish level.
Mutuuzo said that 200 million shillings was availed to some parishes of Bunyangabu district and that each parish was allocated a tune of 30 million shillings revolving fund to be paid back within a period of six months.
“Government started with few parishes but more parishes will be included so that many people can benefit from the program,” Mutuuzo said.
Mutuuzo also asked the people in Bunyangabu to embrace the government’ program of the parish development model, which is aimed at transforming communities.
Mutuuzo said that the program will start operating in a phased approach with preliminary activities for the establishment of the necessary support structures and systems.
Mutuuzo said that key among the activities is the recruitment of Parish Chiefs, establishment and training of Parish Development Committees, set up of the Community Information System -CIS and mobilization of the masses at national and local government level.
“Government is in the process of operationalizing all the newly created parishes and recruiting staff to fill the vacant posts so that the program can start. Money will be directly sent to the parishes and LC11 chairpersons and their parish chiefs will be in charge of the projects,” Mutuuzo said.
She said that the parish model project is a strategy for organizing and delivering public and private sector interventions for wealth creation and employment generation at the parish level as the lowest economic planning unit.
Irene Mbabazi a resident of Buhesi town council said that through the parish community program they received 6.5 million shillings, which they have used to increase on the number of craft products, however they are still in dire need of market for their already made products.
“The program is helping to improve our household incomes because the money which was given to us remains within our parishes and we use it for development,” Mbabazi said.
Joy Musimenta a resident of Rubona said that many people have started setting up income generating projects with money they receive through the program however they are still facing a challenge of markets to sell their products.
“Government should also increase the money so that many people can benefit otherwise some people are missing out,” Musimenta added.
But John Bagonza said he is still skeptical over the handling of the funds on account.He said that they still need much sensitization as Kabahango parish in Buhesi Sub County.
“Most of our people in the villages say the money is free from the government and there is no need of refunding it, while others are proposing to utilize it even without money generating activities, and most of the villages where the programme is supposed to be enrolled don't even have parish chiefs, ” BAgonza observed.
In the current financial year 2021/2022, parliament appropriated only 200 Billion Shillings towards the new model. The model is the latest attempt by the government to roll out at the parish level to alleviate poverty at the grassroots by getting the 39 percent of households out of subsistence economy into commercial production.