When opportunity meets the prepared, it is said great things are bound to happen. This is what exactly happened in 2018 when Mr. Julius Echodu, 34 years old, was invited by the Teso Diocese Development Office (TEDO) under the Church of Uganda a PELUM Uganda Member Organisation, to attend a training on organic farming practices by PELUM Uganda a Co-Host and Country Implementing Partner under the Knowledge Hub for Organic Agriculture and Agroecology in Eastern Africa (KHEA) Project.
After a 343km journey from Kampala city to Kalaki county in Kaberamaido district, PELUM Uganda
team was welcomed with an ululation from a crowd of women from one of the farmers groups
Echodu trained after his Community Integrated Development Initiative (CIDI) training as a multiplier.
Unlike other farmers, Echodu began his farm in 2017 on a 3-acre piece of land. Together with his
wife Ms. Aseri Teddy, they immediately embarked on the use of organic farming methods which
they have stuck to till date.
His only interaction with conventional farming methods was when he worked in Mukono district
as manager for two years for Namagro Enterprises Limited that deals in farm produce. At this job
he was able to observe how chemicals destroy the soil, the hefty expenses incurred on buying
and pesticides and fertilizers as a company from which he promised himself never to do that on
his own farm.
When Echodu was invited by CIDI for a training in the neighboring Soroti district to become a multiplier, it all seemed like he was already made to take on this challenge and opportunity.
Coincidentally, Echodu has always been passionate about Agro-Ecological ways of farming thus
matching the objectives of KHEA project. As a multiplier on the KHEA project, he has been able
to invest in organic pesticides, disease control, value addition, networked with other farmers and
at the same time managed to keep the environment green.
Echodu has also become a self-reliant sustainable human being as he is able to provide food for his family, earn an income from the plants, honey, and animals he sells.
“One bag of tamarind can cost UGX 150,000 when mature. This is enough money to cater for my household needs, said Echodu on his bumper harvests.”
Echodu has also trained over 100 farmers as a multiplier by using both physical and radio programs.
With his goal now set to have his permanent house completed after spending his entire life staying in a grass thatched house, Echodu is forever grateful for the knowledge and skills acquired from PELUM
Uganda through the KHEA project.
For more information visit; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9kBXeafjoo&t=5s
Success story collection – done by Ezra Kalule – KHEA Project Officer – PELUM Uganda,
Edited, reviewed&uploaded by Magino Pamella-KHEA Communications Officer-PELUM Uganda and Biovision Africa Trust Kenya