BRIEF ON IMPLEMENTATION OF THE LOCAL ECONOMIC GROwTH SUPPORT (LEGS) PROJECT
The Local Economic Growth Support (LEGS) is an Integrated Rural Development initiative financed by Islamic Development Bank and Government of Uganda.
The overall goal of the LEGS Project is “to improve individual and household incomes in districts that, among others, have low Levels of water availability for both production and domestic use; and potential to propel production-based economic activities, transformation, and contribution for national growth”.
The project also aims “to contribute to achievement of Sustainable Development Goals, with main emphasis on (SDG) (i) No Poverty; (ii) Zero Hunger; (vi) Clean Water and Sanitation; (vii) Affordable and clean energy”.
- PROJECT COMPONENTS
The LEGS Project has two Components namely:
- Component 1: Water for Enhanced Agricultural Productivity and Environmental Conservation;
- Component 2: Support to Value Chain Development for improved household income
The LEGS is a five-year project, whose implementation commenced in 2019. It is scheduled to end in FY 2024/2025.
The total Project Cost was estimated at USD 50.4 million. A total amount of USD 43.0 million is to be provided by the IsDB, USD 4.8 million by GoU as a co-funding and contribution in-kind or Cash from the Community which is equivalent to USD 2.60 million.
The Project is implemented in the 17 Districts across the North, East, West and Central Regions of Uganda.
Component 1: Water for Enhanced Agricultural Productivity and Environmental Conservation – covers ten Core Districts of: Alebtong, Bunyangabu, Kabarole, Kumi, Kibuku, Katakwi, Kyenjojo, Ntoroko, Gomba and Nakaseke.
Component 2: Support to Value Chain Development – covers 17 Districts comprising the 10 Core Districts under Component 1; and additional seven Districts of Adjumani, Buyende, Tororo, Buikwe, Nwoya, Luwero and Rukungiri. These Districts were selected because of the low levels of Micro-Finance Coverage in the Country.
- CRITERIA FOR SELECTION OF DISTRICTS
The criteria used to select the beneficiary districts was based on the following Parameters:
- (i) Low development indicators, particularly poverty rates
- (ii) Population and Demographic features
- (iii) Poor distribution and status of basic and economic infrastructure
- (iv) Severely water stressed areas;
- (v) Potential for economic activities, transformation and contribution to national growth;
- (vi) Low coverage of micro-finance services
- SELECTION OF MICRO-FINANCE BENEFICIARIES
The Rural Financing Products under the Project are managed through the Micro-finance Services Limited, who select benefiting farmers based on the following criteria:
- (i) Non duplication – the Cooperative/Association/Self Interest Group/Individual is not benefiting from another similar Government intervention
- (ii) Feasibility of the Proposed Enterprise – the proposed enterprise or project is able to accumulate returns to enable benefiting entity pay back the funds advanced to them
- (iii) Formal Entity – the Cooperative/Association/Self Interest Group/Individual is registered and known to the District Local Government
- (iv) Operational and In-existence for not less than two years – the Cooperative/Association/Self Interest Group/Individual is organised and has been operating the proposed enterprise for at least two years
- (v) Promote LED – the proposed project follows the Local Economic Development (LED) principles, which emphasize working in partnerships between LGs, Communities and Private Sector
- (vi) Vulnerable Community Members – Project emphasizes supporting Women, Youth Groups and other Vulnerable Groups
- PROJECT OUTPUTS
The Project shall make investment in a number of areas key among which are the following:
- (i) 36 Micro Irrigation Schemes at Parish level to serve at least 10 Villages;
- (ii) 120Kms of Water Canals for Irrigation from existing freshwater sources or Valley Dams;
- (iii) 500kms of Community Access Roads to connect production fields to the markets
- (iv) 18 Units of Community Based – Micro Shared Solar Grids to serve households and small businesses within the Rural Growth Centers. The energy from the Solar Grids shall be accessed through a prepaid system managed by the community.
- (v) 18 Community Based micro Biogas Units which shall serve at least 10 households in predominantly cattle keeping communities.
- (vi) 36 Motorized Submersible Pumps for deep Boreholes – powered by a Solar System
- (vii) 24 Heavy Duty Tractors
- (viii) 600 Walking Tractors
- (ix) 18 Sites of Community Nursery Beds
- (x) 5 million Tree Seedlings to promote environment conservation especially in areas such as the Eastern Region where the forest cover has been depleted;
- (xi) 36 Artificial Insemination Units to be installed in communities which are predominantly cattle keeping with the aim of improving their breeds and production
- (xii) 18 Milk Collection Centers in communities whose livelihood is primarily Diary Production
- (xiii) 18 Agro-processing Units for Maize, Rice and Coffee among others
- (xiv) 36 Agro-Storage and Bulking Centers for Cereals and Grains
- (xv) Training of not less than 1,500 farmers, members of Water User Association (WUAs) to manage the irrigation schemes; Associations, Cooperatives and Interest Groups
- (xvi) Extend Rural Financing to not less than 15,000 individual beneficiaries and 300 groups using the Islamic Micro – Financing.