Akello Agnes comes from Kuju Amuria district in Eastern Uganda.Agnes joined African Rural University in September 2006 to study Bachelor of Rural Development, which at that time was inter pilot by the University. Agnes was one of the pioneer students that was engaged with traditional wisdom specialists and the lecturers to develop and test the curriculum. A curriculum that did not exist in any higher education establishment in Uganda. The journey was long, the learning steep and a lot of unchartered waters were passed. Her perception of University education was challenged and at times she doubted herself, but she persisted. She learnt to work in communities with humility, had her trial plots of experimenting with various agricultural technologies, she learnt to work with a personal vision. She is a respected leader in the communities where she goes.
Agnes’ initial expectation was to finish her course in three years, gain knowledge and skills,
graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree to go and serve the community. As part of her training and as part of the pioneer group, they were deployed in the community for one month in 2010. She was deployed in Ruteete sub-county. She had life changing experiences with the community where she created friendships and discovered her capacity to influence people for change. Agnes is loved by the people of Ruteete and Kamaira because of her passion and impact on the elderly and the children. Together with the community members using the visionary approach, The community in Kamiara started a community nursery and primary school. Funded and supported by the parents in the community. Thereafter she was involved in a two year internship, 2010-11 in the same sub-county working with the people to realize their visions.
Agnes was employed by URDT as an EPicneter Manager for Mugarama Sub-county in 2012 where she is working to date in a tripartite programme between the sub-county, URDT and the community members.
Community Achievement (Ruteete sub-county)
Agnes has several achievements attributed to her leadership in Ruteete and Mugarama sub-counties.
In Kamaira village, Ruteete sub-county, a community nursery was established during her one month practicum following a community visioning and action planning process. The school started with 25 pupils of nurser, today the school is proud to have ….pupils of nursery to primary…
Community work In Ruteete
She worked with elders aged 50 plus to start a village savings and credit scheme. The scheme
started with members in 2010 and a saving of seven hundred thousand shillings from the
members700,000/= today it has a lending portfolio of 28 million shillings and above. It is run and
managed by the elders. Their vision is to enjoy and live a life of dignity in their old age. The
Ruteete Elders Development Association (RUSEDA) has expanded its membership to….
In Mugarama, where Agnes is employed since 2012, she continues to impact on many people’s lives.. In a recent survey, 2015 of the 30 households assessed, Rhule concluded that “
All Respondents stated that ARU has indeed helped to increase the economic and social status of women as well as helping with the introduction of vegetable gardens in each household.”
Meeting with government officials She further asserts that, The visions thinking/systems approach is being used by most people in Mugarama. They know what it is and what their personal visions are but are not able to define the term. Thus Agnes is focusing more on outcome than method meaning she focuses on getting residents to keep their vision in mind when working rather than how to get to their vision or to complete it.
There seems to be an overall communal agreement that the economic and social status of women in Mugarama has raised since ARU has placed the epicenter manager in the area. This has been shown through the women who have begun working outside the home and also the increase in household income as well as the planting of vegetable gardens.”
Agnes says because of the good training offered by ARU, she has gained knowledge
and skills on community developments, has personally become an all-round person
who can handle various aspects of life, acquired good community communication skills, Leadership skills, project proposal writing skills, public speaking and has shifted
her mind from problem solving to creative orientation