Coffee Farmers Association
Rakai District Lwanda S/County
||0° 38' 55" S,
31° 27' 17" E
The association is located in Rakai district, 40 km along Masaka - Mutukula Highway, 30 km off Rakai Road, 15 Km after Kyotera Town Council.
It is one of the four sister associations Dwaniro
, where Kagamba is the oldest one and its chairman took the lead to the formation of the other three.
All associations lie in a very clayey area that during the dry season harden and gives a hard time to the roots of the trees. Though the district is blessed with Lake Kijjanebarora, a crater lake that supplies the surrounding region with a multitude of springs, in the long dry spell even the small springs do dry out, leaving the crops and especially the coffee and banana plantations at a great risk. On the other side, during the rain season the wet clayey soil put the roots at risk of rotting. Farmers are therefore trained on how to improve the soil structure using organic matter and the soil drainage systems for discharging excess water.
The Coffee Wilt Disease (CWD) hit hard the district: many trees died and many farmers retired. Through NUCAFE's collaboration with donors DANIDA and UCDA the associations have been able to set up their own coffee nursery and it is believed that in a short time the district will become one of the leading coffee growing ones in the country.
All associations have been succesfully extended the G4G program by DANIDA and they are starting the Gender Equity Program by NUCAFE.
The parent association (Kagamba CFA) encouraged farmers to save money for the future creating a village bank, owned by the coffee farmers. On the borrowing side, the associations are working with the Kyotera Branch of the Centenary Bank for specially agreed loans, which give the farmer a favourable grace period before reimbursement and time extensions if the coffee harvest is affected by bad weather.
Rakai has been devastated by HIV/AIDS: 80% of the households in the district has a dead relative or a relative living with the disease. To solve the problem, the "Raka" project was launched by the government to educate people about the disease, where most of them believed that it was as the result of bewitching and voodoo. Organised farmers have been successful: men are using condoms, pregnant women undergo HIV/AIDS testing, infected ones live a normal life and the suicide rate lowered.