Voices and views
The overall objective of this project seeks to contribute to the empowerment of vulnerable youth in Northern Uganda so as to promote economic development, good governance, and the prevention of crime and social or political unrest.
Octavos Kebisiiba, a beneficiary of the “Economic Empowerment of Youth with Disabilities project in Uganda” dropped out of school in senior three due to challenges of school fees. Octavos said she did not have much support from her family. With support from the project, Octavos under took training in hair dressing and financial literacy for a period of three months. After which she received a start -up kit from the project comprising of; two hair driers, hair rollers and some braids to enable her set-up her business. With this facilitation and savings she had made from her meal and transport allowances, she was able to set up a salon in Hoima town.
To diversify her business and have multiple sources of income, Octavos ventured into petrol vending which was a very profitable business at the time. This she did alongside her hair dressing activities within the same premise. Unfortunately, one day the petrol caught fire from her charcoal stove, destroying her salon with all the equipment therein. The fire also spread and destroyed the neighbouring buildings belonging to the same landlord. This brought a strain in her relationship with the landlord and was a very devastating experience which caused a major setback to her business.
With the little savings from her hair dressing business which she had barely started, Octavos was able to re-establish her salon after the devastating experience. She has now diversified her business by stocking a range of beauty products in her salon. The hairdressing skills and financial management training have equipped Octavos with ability to better manage her finances and grow her business. Octavos has vowed to use these skills to overcome poverty and improve her life.