Location: Masaka, Uganda

Setting: Rural

Established: 1994

Staff: 25

Subject Areas:

Sustainable Integrated Organic Agriculture: seed beds, trainings farmers, environmental management

Organization Objectives: St. Jude family projects (Rural Training center for Sustainable Integrated Organic Agriculture)’s mission is to provide trainings and inspiring demonstrations in integrated organic agriculture. Its main goals include the following.

To work towards making rural areas a better place to live in, a place that young people want to remain in instead of migrating to urban areas. More specifically related to their purpose seeing healthy people eating diverse and healthy food with reliable income.

To work with communities by building on and strengthening existing resources whether they are tangible ones like natural resources or intangible ones such as indigenous knowledge.

To nature a culture in which farmers are continually learning from each other.

Program Information:

Sustainable Integrated Organic Agriculture:

St. Jude main activities focus on farm of 3.7 acres of sloping land with a demonstration of 17 Integrated Agricultural projects, which serve as an example for small household families. The projects include: Banana plantation, apiary, vegetable growing, orchard, appropriate technology, water harvesting and fish farming among others. St. Jude projects targets the young farmers, Women’s Groups and surrounding communities.

Intern Opportunities:
  • Assist staff in maintaining the seed nursery and with grafting of plants
  • Conduct on-site short blocks of training courses on integrated organic agriculture and its benefits which last between 3-14 days.
  • Research nutrition facts and incorporate new foods into the seed nursery and trainings
  • Assess the skills and resources of St. Jude and its clients develop potential income generating activities (IGAs) involved with agriculture
Intern Requirements:
  • Background in agriculture or environment
  • Experience conducting trainings
  • Strong research and assessment skills
  • Ability to communicate effectively
  • Innovative, creative and flexible

Program Supervisor:
  • Paul holds a Bachelors’ degree in B.com Accounting from Makerere University, he joined the organization in 2001 and working as the supervisor. He is concerned with project implementation and day today work.

Working Conditions: St Jude family projects are located in Busense village in Masaka district. The means of transport commonly used are Taxis and walking to shorter distances. Interns will have access to computers in all offices but it is advisable for an intern to bring their own Laptop. English is spoken by all staff members but basic knowledge of Luganda will be useful when interacting with clients. Usually offices open up at 8:00am to 5:00pm.

Organizational Background: St. Jude family projects (st.jude) are a vibrancy and innovation in response to the need for sustainable livelihoods for small-scale farmers in Uganda. The Kizza family has led by example, turning their farm into a demonstration that has inspired thousands of visitors over the years. What was a family farm is now a Ugandan NGO with tremendous potential to go on and have a great deal of impact in its promotion of integrated organic farming. The seed for st.jude was sown when Josephine Kizza attended an intensive introduction to organic farming in UK in 1993. This gave her the confidence, working hand in hand with her husband John, to develop their farm into a demonstration of integrated organic farming. They introduced courses for small-scale farmers and registered as a community based organization in 1994 and then as an NGO in 1997. Demand for st.jude training has continued unabated and without any need for advertising. Word of mouth and publicity from high profile visits, such as two from President Museveni, has been more than sufficient. St. Jude has maintained high standards in both its demonstrations and training despite the dynamic changes in community needs and unpredictable weather. St. Jude has also given birth to the Masaka Organic processors, which now runs as a separate and viable business under st.jude’s guidance, drying and marketed fruits from farmers in the surrounding area. St Jude get its funding from Cudor trust UK and Cuackers services from Australia. In 15 years of operation, St, Jude training center has had a strong impact on rural farming, especially in Masaka and Rakai districts. Over 1000 local rural farmers-primarily single mothers and widows plus youth are organized in self-help groups as a result of St, Jude training center intervention. These farmers have been trained in the techniques of organic farming and their standards have been greatly improved. The farmers’ cohesive groups have sustained their activities even after the end of the follow up program.

About St. Jude’s Clients: St. Jude family projects work with a wide array of people ranging from farmers, small business owners, Widows and youths. The services provided by the organization attempt to target the specific needs of the people and enable them to achieve more inspiration in integrated organic agriculture.

Site Team Comments: “We believe Ben will enjoy working with St Jude Family projects. He will have the opportunity to experience first-hand what is involved with running a sustainable organic agriculture project. We believe that his experience working with Community Gardens will directly contribute to St. Jude’s programs and will fit well with their work. Not only is St. Jude an extremely successful sustainable farm, but it provides extensive trainings to the local community, and through this internship Ben will have the opportunity to conduct field trainings and work directly with surrounding communities. Ben will become familiar with the day-to-day functioning of St Jude family projects as he integrates with the management and field staff and learn of the challenges they face. We are looking forward to having Ben in Masaka.”