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AMUKA – Bugobero, Uganda

At the Annual General Meeting 2009, the couple Antje and Orge Balack from Hamburg presented a private project they manage. With the support of VFKE this work should be placed on a broader basis. The Balacks accompany the development on-site with further visits to Bugobero.

This year, 7 men and 5 women in Bugobero (in the district Mbale in eastern Uganda) started a project called “Amuka”. “Amuka” means “Wake up” in Swahili. It is the concern of the work to improve the living conditions of the population in Bugobero, especially by offering people help to help themselves. The idea is to start with health care. As a first step, a “demonstration garden” with medicinal plants is laid out. A property is already available which is very conveniently situated on the village street. It is all about plants that are native to Uganda, but whose value as a medicinal plant is largely unknown. An example is the use of papaya for wound treatment and worming.

Two team members are going to travel to a week-long seminar of “anamed” (anamed means “action natural medicine”) in the west of the country. There they will learn about the production of teas and ointments, improved sanitation, energy-saving cooking facilities, erosion control, treatment of snake bites, health promotion of AIDS patients, treatment of malaria and more. The “anamed” seminars which are taking place worldwide were founded by the German chemist Dr. H. M Hirt. The acquired knowledge will be passed on for example to women’s groups, by the work with school groups or to visitors of the “demonstration garden”.

The infrastructure on the property shall on the one hand be built with locally available materials, but on the other hand it should also highlight other opportunities for improvement. Thus, for example a kitchen house can have an energy-saving and low-smoke cooking facility, the roof of a building can be used for rainwater collection, and next to the latrine an improved hand-washing basin can be offered.

Specifically, the following initial steps are planned:

  • participation of Philip Sikhayile and lname Muyekho in the anamed seminar in Masaka / Uganda
  • creation of a medicine garden with a wire fence and hedge for the protection from animals.
  • purchase of plants
  • agreement for long-term use and surveying of the property
  • construction of latrines
  • construction of a smaller seminar and office building
  • construction of a small kitchen house
  • install a well just outside the garden (about 3500 €)

Our club members and Antje Orge Balack manage the project with a lot of personal commitment and dedication. In 2010, Orge visited Uganda twice at his own expense and is supporting the local Amuka team with administrative, technical and financial assistance.

The two villagers Iname and Philip who learned by “Anamed International” how to educate the creation and use of a medicinal herb garden, have transmitted this knowledge to the villages of their neighborhood.

Amuka women

The interest of the population grew over time and so lname initiated a women’s group that meets weekly and is learning how to improve hygiene, nutrition and health in each family using simple methods.

Part of the garden

With the help of the neighborhood the Amuka team built a fence around the garden and cultivated beds with medicinal plants, which were funded by VFKE. During Orge’s second visit, the first harvest had already been brought in and the second seed had germinated.

In January 2013 Antje travelled with her daughter to Uganda and accompanied the planned construction of a well, a shelter for group work, a “compost toilet” and other projects. The VFKE had continued to support the project.

Since 2018 Amuka is a registered association in Germany.

Our bank account:

Amuka e.V.
Stadtsparkasse Wedel
IBAN: DE 22 2215 1730 0015 0045 83

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