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Improving security in the region for sustainable socio-economic development

The Karamoja region of north eastern Uganda is one of the most marginalized parts of the country. For decades, it has suffered from high levels of conflict and insecurity, alongside low levels of development. the karamoja region of North Eastern Uganda is predominantly populated by pastoral groups. It suffers from chronic poverty and has the worst development indicators in the country. Protracted inter- and intra-clan conflicts over cattle and access to pasture and resources, cross-border incursions by groups from neighboring Kenya and Southern Sudan and a high level of small arms proliferation and violence have all negatively affected the region’s socio-economic development. The situation in Karamoja has been further complicated by ongoing debates about the economic viability (and desirability) of pastoralism as a livelihood option, tensions between traditional and state security and justice processes, and sometimes heavy handed approaches to disarmament, provoking resentment amongst communities towards the army and government more generally

Climate Change and Adoption

The impacts of climate change create challenges and impose severe losses and hardships on the poorest communities as their livelihoods are likely to be more sensitive to adverse impacts of climate change. The most dominant and widespread disaster due to climate change is drought, whose frequency is observed to be on the increase. Drought has severely affected the agricultural sector leading to impacts such as famine, malnutrition, low production and productivity of crops and animals

Enhancing water availability for improving livelihoods in Karamoja

Karamoja is one of the water stressed, dry land sub-region in north-east Uganda. Its infrastructure including water infrastructure is underdeveloped, and it also faces climate variability and climate change. Prolonged droughts and shifts in weather result in low agricultural productivity and declining rural production systems resulting in negative consequences on people’s livelihoods. Karamoja performs poorly on development indicators: 76% of its population lives under the poverty line, compared to 23% at national level while malnutrition is around 37%

Capacity development and training

Since Museveni's ascent to power the Ugandan state apparatus succeeded in stabilising the political situation in Uganda. Except for the north eastern part of the country (i.e. Karamoja), the national army could safeguard the security of the Ugandan citizens. The functioning of the rule of law in Karamoja in particular was under threat, due to a growing group of young men with few opportunities in the mainstream of Ugandan society. During the campaigns of disarmament of the Ugandan army, human rights were not well respected in Karamoja. The state was not capable to play to gain a effective preponderance to counteract the frequent armed conflicts between communities. Moreover: socio-economical marginalisation and cultural habits (such as cattle raids and suppression of women) contributed to high crime rates, whereas access to juridical structures are insufficient... 

Supporting communities to build resilience through agriculture

DADO in collaboration with the Government of Uganda and respective District Local Governments has been supporting communities in Karamoja to build resilience over the past nine years through a holistic livelihood programme focusing on three integrated priority areas of livestock production, crop production and land and water management within a Disaster Risk Management (DRM) framework. To provide basis for designing appropriate interventions without undermining existing survival mechanisms, a comprehensive Household Economy Analysis (HEA) backed up by five complementary studies was carried out in 2010 to generate livelihood profiles and understand how livelihoods can be affected by wider economic or ecological changes. Following pacification of the region and ongoing resettlements, another HEA baseline is being carried out in January/February 2014 to match programming with the present livelihood trends in the region