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Project information

Siriba Vocational Training Centre, Uganda

Concerned families, teachers and community leaders have agitated to start a vocational training centre for poor and vulnerable young people; most are orphans too. The school, on an escape route from past troubles in the north, has grown rapidly. We want to help them make this VTC a real success!

3-5 years

Charity information: HANDS AROUND THE WORLD

  • Need


    This training programme aims to help young people out of dire poverty and towards a sustainable and better quality of life - it is vitally important to break the cycle of deprivation and give these vulnerable young people encouragement and hope. There is currently no adequate water supply at Siriba and a borehole is needed. A survey in now about to start!


    We have helped build a vocational training centre (VTC) comprising carpentry and tailoring workshops with a lockable store and classroom. Training of young people started informally in August 2008 with 8 students in each of the two disciplines, and has now grown to 25 in each. Students enroll for a 2 year programme which includes elements both of training and of working under supervision.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To help unemployed young people achieve independence through learning skills and management.


    » We helped construct workshops, local trainers initially volunteered their services, now the programme is being encouraged towards self-sustainability.

    What success will look like

    Success will be... seeing young people with carpentry and tailoring skills able to set up in business and climb the ladder out of poverty.

  • Impact


    It will provide basic practical skills, including in management, for many people currently unhelped. This will help self-esteem and confidence issues. Improved skill levels will benefit the community as a whole. Students on graduation will receive a government-recognised certificate and a toolkit, hopefully leading to opportunities for further training and employment.


    1 Trainers could cease working if unpaid - we have offered support in the early years; later this should be covered by fees and local education grants. A local management committee has been formed under the Anglican bishop.
    2 Failure to reach the required standards could lead to no certificate. This will be monitored by the college in Kiryandongo.
    3 Good communication needs to be encouraged. Email access is poor but text messaging works well when electricity is available for charging mobiles.


    Six monthly reports on progress will be required and will be supplemented by those from regular support visitors. Sponsors will receive reports about the young people they are helping. Donors are encouraged to ask to visit Siriba to see the centre in action for themselves.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £21,687

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £1,285 Equipment Treadle machines, toolkits, work benches
      £1,152 Salaries Pays 4 trainers for a year
      £6,000 Sponsorship Supports 50 students through training
      £11,350 Water Geological survey and drilling borehole
      £1,900 Support 2 Skill-sharing volunteers' costs

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Anon donation £10,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Situated just south of the Nile crossing near Bweyale in Masindi District, Siriba is on the road which goes north from Kampala to Gulu. The journey takes about 5 hours in a minibus on a fairly good road. During the LRA troubles, a refugee camp was started at Kiryandongo not far away. The school is a parnership between the Anglican church and the government.


    The local community has a very poor population many of whom (including Althurs Obolgiwu the headteacher) are internally displaced from the north. There are many orphans both of AIDS and conflict. It is striking that the community is cohesive and very supportive, maybe as they share a common experience of adversity. All will benefit from this centre and its work.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We have been involved at Siriba from the outset with the construction of the VTC and have always wanted to see it through to fruition when the young people are demonstrably benefiting from the provision. We have experience with our volunteers of helping other centres in sub-Saharan Africa to develop.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Althurs Obolgiwu

    The school headteacher and chairman of the management committee, he is the co-ordinator for the project.

    Rev Mike Williams

    Our link volunteer who will continue to visit, he has an engineering background and a love of woodworking, as well as bridging the church link.

Siriba VTC

Siriba VTC


Pays a carpentry or tailoring trainer for a month

I was very impressed to see the VTC in action. The students were well motivated and the quality of the teaching very professional.

Rev Mike Williams