If you are familiar with the Barber Shop Chronicles, on at the NST City before Christmas, you will appreciate that the barber shop is an important community hub in many African societies. Enable Busoga has been asked to invest in setting up two such shops in Uganda. When the solar power business expanded into this remote rural area, the manager found that the locations where the panels were installed could accommodate more than just the facility to charge mobile phones, so it was suggested that they could try establishing barber shops with any electrical equipment powered from the panels! For the equivalent of £250 the shops have been set up.
The tree nursery business (Transcending Hope Uganda) has been running successfully in Busoga since 2013. Over 1.2 million timber and fruit trees have been planted. This includes land at 17 churches and on nearly 5,000 small holdings. A typical rural Ugandan church will have about 1.5 acres of land usually not demarcated, nor used for growing crops. There is much interest in planting trees to delineate boundaries and provide timber and fruit.
Tree cover across Uganda has fallen from 24% in the 1990s to 9% in 2018 and there is a Government backed push to restore much of what has been lost. A typical tree can sequester up to 0.2 tonnes of carbon dioxide over 25 years of growth and planting out millions of tree seedlings will act as a great natural carbon sink – they just need to be looked after until they have become established. So, you might be interested in purchasing some trees yourself – at around £0.05 each it is a very cost effective means of making a significant contribution towards climate change mitigation!