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Ugandan Youth innovators meet Queen in London

The young leaders and socio-entrepreneurs were hosted by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II of England at Buckingham Palace on June 26, 2018 in London, UK (FILE PHOTO)

LONDON – Three young Ugandan innovators including Makerere University former guild presidential candidate Mr Bazil Mwotta Biddemu have received the prestigious Queen’s Young Leaders Award from Queen Elizabeth II of England.

The three Ugandans were among 61 selected from all Commonwealth nations in recorginition their exceptional works in transforming communities.

(L-R) Stephen Katende, Bazil Mwotta Biddemu and Elizabeth Kasujja were among the 61 vibrant socio-entrepreneurs selected for the prestigious accolade

Bazil- Mwotta, a Makerere graduate was chosen in recognition of the work he is doing to help farmers in his community thrive.

Mwotta is the founder of AgroDuuka, which helps farmers in Uganda access information about market prices for produce in their region. It is designed to act as a low-cost SMS platform to connect smallholder rural farmers directly to buyers, before and after their harvest.

Bazil and his team have helped more than 800 farmers from over 36 villages in Western and Central Uganda to gain a fair price for their produce. AgroDuuka has recently partnered with the Uganda National Farmers Federation, which is enabling almost five million farmers to have access to AgroDuuka.

Elizabeth Kasujja

Kasujja was recognized for transform the lives of people living with mental health issues in Uganda using Technology.

Ms Elizabeth Kasujja from Uganda receives her Young Leaders Award from Queen Elizabeth II during the Queen’s Young Leaders Awards Ceremony at Buckingham Palace on June 26, 2018 in London, England

Her inspiration came after witnessing the stigma surrounding mental health in her community, and discovering that many mental health problems went undiagnosed over few trained professionals and resources.

Her application “Clear Yo Mind“, a secure one to one online platform for people to express their feelings and access free help from mental health professionals.

Elizabeth is currently studying towards a Diploma in Psychology for a better experience.

Stephen Katende

(L-R) Elizabeth Kasujja, Bazil Mwotta Biddemu and Stephen Katende in London. They received their Young Leaders Award from Queen Elizabeth II during the Queen’s Young Leaders Awards Ceremony at Buckingham Palace on June 26, 2018 in London, England

Stephen works to ensure that children in rural areas of Uganda are able to complete their education

He is the director of Kisoboka Africa, which runs School Community Banks in the rural districts of Lyantonde and Lwengo that allow parents to save, borrow and invest for their children’s education.
Kisoboka Africa also equips parents with entrepreneurial and agricultural skills to help start and run their own businesses.

Stephen and his team now work with 150 parents in two schools, and have helped over 400 children to acquire education.

The awards ceremony was attended by Her Majesty the Queen, the recently wedded Duke and Dutchess of Sussex and British football legend, David Beckham.

About the award

The Queen’s Young Leader Award recognises and celebrates exceptional people aged 18-29 from across the Commonwealth, who are taking the lead in their communities and using their skills to transform lives ncluding supporting people living with mental health problems, access to education, promoting gender equality, food scarcity and climate change

Winners of this prestigious Award receive a unique package of training, mentoring and networking, including a one-week residential programme in the UK during which they will collect their Award from Her Majesty The Queen.

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