Monday, October 10th, 2022 | By

The National Association of Professional Environmentalists (NAPE) with support from UNWOMEN, Women’s Peace and Humanitarian Fund (WPHF) in recognizing the contributions and promoting peer learning between CSOs working on Women, youth, peace and humanitarian issues conducted capacity building trainings with ORRA.

 The two-day training that involved the Oil refinery project affected persons under their association “Oil Refinery Residents Association”-ORRA conducted in Kyakaboga village, Buseruka subcounty in Hoima district aimed at equipping them with skills and knowledge on how to conduct exchange visits.

ORRA is a women led community-based organization which started in 2012 as a pressure group to protect the rights of the refinery project affected persons, especially women and youth, formed following a community outcry over 29 sq. Km of land that displaced 7,118 people from 13 villages in Kabaale parish, Buseruka sub county.

Joan Akiiza, the NAPE Legal Officer revealed that the training is intended to enable the Oil Refinery Residents Association-ORRA participants to acquire the necessary skills on how to conduct exchange learning visits and improve their visibility while conducting advocacy.

“This training by NAPE and particularly involving Oil Refinery Residents Association-ORRA is being conducted as a strategy of sharing knowledge, experiences, lessons and challenges about common issues affecting the communities” elaborates Akiiza.

While sharing the whole overview of the training, the group Chairperson Millius Nyamahunge said that the training is important for ORRA because it helps them to explain the achievements and successes achieved.

“The Association can now share their current life time experiences because the challenges they faced and the lessons they learnt can be shared practically after carrying out an exchange visit if they all have common problems or challenges” says Nyamahunge.

According to Innocent Tumwebaze, the ORRA vice chairperson and youth representative, such trainings are good to help in empowering the communities affected by such government projects because they can ably fight for their rights.

Meanwhile, Gard Andionzi, the Persons with disability representative in the association also said that the exercise helps the vulnerable groups to advocate for their rights since learning how to share their experiences can make them openly share what they have been subjected to.

Christopher Opio, the executive secretary of ORRA also said that the training by NAPE helps all the vulnerable groups including the Women, PWDs, and Persons living with HIV/AIDs and the youths to learn what issues and experiences they can share and how they can do it.

“The training also empowers us to use social media to communicate to our audience on the issues affecting us through use of platforms like WhatsApp, Facebook and twitter”, said Opio.

Opio explained that the move to have trainings on sharing experiences, lessons and challenges is important to make them prosper wide and far due to the fact that they are a young association trying to thrive.