Message from Ojok Okello, Our Founder

Greetings from Okere City!

We started this project in 2019 and significant progress has already been made. Okere City’s core objective in its foundational stage is to establish relationships, identify and tap various opportunities whilst working closely with the the different layers of our community stakeholders.

I am strongly convicted that this can be sustainably done by deploying creative thinking and bold innovative approaches at every step. In fact, it is our firm belief and conviction in this idea that has enabled us to register key milestones.

So far, we have interacted, cheered up, learned and created authentic relationships in additional to implementing tangible and impactful community development projects ranging from early childhood development promotion; ensuring access to clean and safe drinking water; bringing basic grocery goods and services closer to the people; environmental conservation through community forestry projects and campaigns against cutting down of natural trees; among others.

 

I am always inspired by the stories of hope, resilience and determination for a better life imbued in the spirits of Okere community members. It is such stories and experience that keep me awake to continue working to make this crazy project idea continue making lasting impact in the lives of rural people. 

 

I must confess that bringing the Okere City idea to life is perhaps my greatest life's achievement - a feat I am deeply proud of. Matter-of-factly, I am investing my time, money and every effort in the Okere City idea for a ‘selfish reason’. I call it a ‘selfish reason’ because Okere is my village and I truly want to create authentic opportunities for my brothers, sisters, cousins, nieces, nephews, aunties and uncles – in short my clan and kin. Somehow, if I do not use my knowledge, skills and other material and/or financial resources I have been blessed with, I would be postponing dependency burden and other associated challenges of absolute poverty to the future and to the next generation. If I could do something to create a better future for my relatives and rural associates, it would be through Okere City.

But also, I am blessed to get the best education in development studies both from Makerere University and the London School of Economics and Political Science. If I cannot use by knowledge and skills to better the livelihoods of the people in the village, how would I get the moral and technical authority to influence development work anywhere else? This questions gets me to work every day while emboldening my vision to bear the idea and make it work whether by hook and crook.

My excitement that the Okere City idea has seen light and come to life cannot be measured and I look forward to supporting it in any way to make it be a living proof of concept that works and can be replicated everywhere across the world. I hope you do support it too.

Okere Community Development Project (Okere City) is an ambitious community based social enterprise on a journey to tranform Okere village in Northern Uganda into thriving and sustainable city through integrated rural development approaches. 

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