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Peace in Karamoja, Uganda, brings new hope

Despite years of violence and unpredictable weather, residents in Karamoja, Uganda, are making small steps to get food security and peace to remain in their country, IRIN reports.

The area is comprised of nearly 1.1 million people who have struggled for years to feed their families and stay out of conflicts that arose due to "violence and lawlessness," according to Milton Lopira, head of the local humanitarian group the Warrior Squad Foundation. Now, men, women and children are beginning to have the opportunities to engage in non-violent acts like farming and rebuilding the area.

Because of the changes, Uganda's central government is determined to help build up the area and make it more productive.

"We want to see how [local people's] minds can be engaged in production so that they are not at the periphery but participating in development alternatives," Pius Bigirimana, permanent secretary in Uganda's Office of the Prime Minister, told the publication.

Over the past two years, the Prime Minister's office has developed a Karamoga Intergrated Disarmament and Development Programme that has grown from international donations and will go toward updating the rural area.

The project aims to pave the main road, build dams, create irrigation systems and supply residents with farming tools. 
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