ABIM – Catholic Relief Services, (CRS), a consortium of six partners in implementing a six-year project funded by the USAID Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) has helped to rehabilitate a 7.3 km Awach-Gangming community access road that was in a very bad state since 1998.
This is the first time the road which connects three sub-counties including Awach, Kiru and Orwamuge in Abim District has been upgraded in the last 25 years.
Awach-Gangming community access road is the nearest road that connects communities to much sought-after social services including Orwamuge Health Center, Awach Market, and Awach primary school. It also links Awach Sub County to other districts including Otuke, Amuria, Soroti, Lira, Pader, and Agago in Acholi sub-region.
Ms. Olive D’Mello, the Ag. Head of Programming at CRS said that the poor road infrastructure in the Karamoja Sub-region makes it difficult for the communities to access basic services like markets, schools, and health facilities.
“CRS is proud to have been associated with this joint venture and are pleased that the local government has included this access road in their inventory of public works and is making the necessary budgetary provision to sustain its maintenance over time,” Ms. D’Mello said.
Chip Bury, a Senior Humanitarian Assistance Officer at USAID said the road upgrade would help to boost household incomes.
“This project has worked on many issues in the region and it has addressed the nutrition needs of pregnant and lactating women and children under the age of two, boosting household incomes and mobilizing communities to advocate for improved governance on issues related to food and nutrition in the region.”
On his part, Charles Omugetum, the Ag Deputy Chief Administrative Officer of Abim District warned the locals against destroying it now that it has been rehabilitated by CRS.
“Some of these local are stubborn because as they are going to the garden they plough the road. You should plough the garden, not the road so that it can stay for three, four, or five years because as a district we have very meager resources, the money that we were supposed to bring here should be taken somewhere else to work on other areas such that children and mothers in that area can access markets, schools, and health facilities easily.”
All the road works that CRS has worked on in Karamoja are part of the greater achievements of the $43.6 million USAID-funded Nuyok program.
The program, named Nuyok (which means “it is ours” in the local language) is being implemented in Abim, Nakapiripirit, Nabilatuk and Napak Districts and is expected to have a measurable impact on 181,053 direct participants (in an estimated 32,675 households) in 524 villages.
Nuyok seeks to strengthen governance, promote gender equity, build community capacities to manage shocks and stress, strengthen traditional and diversified livelihood strategies and improve nutrition and health, including water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH), for pregnant and lactating women (PLW), adolescent girls and children under five years of age (CU5).
The program began implementation on 29 September 2017 and is expected to be completed by 30 September 2023.
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