Kwataniza is a concept from one of the local languages in Uganda and it means “let’s work together”. According to the main objective of Kwataniza it means increasing the understanding and solidarity between people in Holland and in Uganda. In daily practice it means that Kwataniza:
- wants to promote contacts between people in Holland and in Uganda in order to exchange knowledge, skills, information and hospitality;
- will cooperate with organisations in Uganda that want to promote durable development on a basis of mutual respect;
- will collect financial means that will benefit the poorest people in Uganda, in particular women and youth;
- will promote democratic responsability and respect for the environment.
Winston Churchill once described Uganda as the “pearl of Africa”. But a long civil war brought the country in East Africa on the brink of total destruction. The name of dictator Idi Amin will forever be connected to the tragedy that took place during the 1970’s in this country. In 1979 Idi Amin was brought down through a long and severe battle by the undisciplined forces of a new dictator: Obote. In 1986 Obote himself was beaten by the disciplined resistance movement of Yoweri Museveni. Museveni is the present president of Uganda and he tries to develop the country. This is a slow and difficult process, but there is hope for the future.
In Holland Kwataniza is a democratic association with an executive committee and members. You can be either a donator without membership or a donator with membership. As a donator without membership you donate money for the projects Kwataniza supports in Uganda. All the money you donate is spent on these projects, none is spent on the association. In addition you can be a donator with membership. As a member you can influance the decisions that are taken by the association. Members pay (apart from their donation) a 10 Euros membership fee. This money covers the associations’ expenditures, like stamps and the organisation of occasional member meetings. Also, as a member you receive the Kwataniza newsletter about three times a year. In this newsletter we publish reports about the progress of the projects, experiences of travellers in Uganda and interviews with local people who participate in the projects we support.
Ineke Jongerius and Maurice Barnes represent Kwataniza in Uganda. They search for already existing small local development projects in which Ugandans are already involved. The Kwataniza committee takes the decision wether to support these projects or not, checking the criteria we use (see below). When the projects meet the criteria we take a decision about the (amount of) financial support. Ineke and Maurice monitor the projects and report to the committee. Kwataniza never covers the total costs of a project. There must be some financial contribution from our Ugandan project partner.
In our articles of association we laid down the criteria we use to check wether or not to support a project. Some of Kwataniza’s criteria are:
- the partner organisation has to involve the poor people in its activities, in particular women and young people;
- the Ugandan partner has to be a democratic organisation with a transparant decision making process;
- the partner has to be capable to fulfill the project to the end and the members of the partner themselves have to contibute substantially to the realisation of the project.
- donate money to the Kwataniza solidarity organisation;
- tell your family and friends about the work that is done by Kwataniza;
- be a donator with membership for at least €10 a year.
Kwataniza, let’s work together. We appeal to you to make it possible for us to work together with the people in Uganda. For solidarity and the durable development of Uganda.
Kwataniza solidarity organisation. C/o Leusdenhof 275, 1108 DM Amsterdam, The Netherlands
With kind regards, Tiny Koppens, Bep Verkerk, Tineke de Rijk, Bep van Ooostrom en Olle van der Hulst.