Jan 12, 2018
Promoting Best Practices in Cooperative Development Despite rapid growth over the past decade and a decrease in poverty, approximately 27 percent of the Ugandan population continues to live below the poverty line. Much of the poverty is concentrated in rural areas of Uganda. With agriculture constituting 80 percent of the workforce, there is a need to assist smallholder farmers to increase their crop yields, improve food security and increase incomes. Rural smallholder farmers commonly lack access to markets, improved inputs, technical knowledge of planting and harvesting processes as well as have limited to no access to post-harvest storage facilities. Combined, these challenges limit farmers’ agricultural productivity. The cooperative development model is a strong tool for bringing... Read more
Dec 09, 2017
Cooperation Among Ugandan Farmers: Cultivating Social Capital RESEARCH ARTICLE: 
J.L. Morrow, Jr., Richard Patrick Joyce III, William J. McMahon, Antonio M. DeMaia,
S. Caleb McVicker, Ashley E. Parsons, and Kristin Wilcox Abstract A survey was administered to 183 Ugandan farmers in August 2014 to assess the factors that influence their willingness to become members of a proposed new agricultural cooperative. In particular, we were interested in a better understanding of how farmers viewed the social benefits associated with cooperation. These social benefits have the potential to become valuable sources of social capital. Four valid and reliable measures of... Read more
Mar 09, 2017
Economic Development Factsheet Global Communities’ economic development programs aim to catalyze sustainable and inclusive economic growth by strengthening the capacity and integration of economic actors to effectively pursue market-based opportunities. Our programs increase incomes and support local economies through assisting in the development of micro, small and medium-size enterprises; strengthening household resiliency; fostering private sector-driven workforce development; creating expanded access to financial services; and supporting local governments in creating business enabling environments—being especially mindful of the needs of youth, women and marginalized groups. We use a systems-based approach that... Read more
Dec 28, 2016
Cooperatives: Building Success Together With over 60 years of experience in building capacity around the world, Global Communities focuses on the five key dimensions of cooperative success to increase incomes, strengthen democratic values and promote equality. Global Communities cooperative programs are operational in Mongolia, Rwanda, Uganda and urban Kenya. Our in-country teams of technical experts boost the capacity of small–scale farmers and empower them to see their peers and their farms as pathways out of poverty. Read more about our work with cooperatives here.
Dec 21, 2016
Agriculture & Food Security Programming Global Communities’ agriculture and food security programs aim to improve livelihoods through increasing agricultural production and sales and enhancing food security for the poor. Our programs target farmers and farmer groups, small and medium agricultural enterprises (SMEs), rural and urban poor, youth, the food-insecure, and other vulnerable populations enabling them to effectively pursue profitable agricultural activities and escape the cycle of poverty. Our work occurs in a variety of situations and settings, including transitional and post-conflict with IDPs and refugees. Read more about our work in agriculture and food security... Read more
Jul 21, 2016

Participants in the Ejo Heza program show off their improved crop yields Why the Global Food Security Act Matters Originally published on Medium  By Elizabeth Adams, Global Communities Technical Specialist for Agriculture  In today’s polarized political environment, even issues that once received broad bipartisan support have become divisive flashpoints. So the recent passage of the Global Food Security Act (GFSA), signed into law by President Obama yesterday, is something worth applauding; it clearly demonstrates that the U.S. is willing to engage on the issue of food security in a productive manner. Though perhaps more importantly, it also shows a commitment to... Read more
Jun 13, 2016
Multipurpose Cooperative Entities Challenge Cooperative Sector in Uganda By Richard Mujuni, Program Officer, DESIGN team, Uganda This article originally appeared on the Global Cooperative Learning Platform. One of the major impediments to growing cooperative structures in Uganda is born from the multipurpose nature of our umbrella organizations. For example, in Mubende (just west of Kampala), there is the Mubende Growers Union, but this union contains diverse enterprises like coffee, beans, maize, and other produce grown in Mubende. A close assessment of this arrangement exposes the weaknesses and deficiencies of cooperative unions. In their current and complex settings, these... Read more
Feb 22, 2016
A Day in a Life of a Cooperative Matt Feldman, Visiting International Professional in Rwanda and Uganda, August 2015 Worldwide, the rural poor face similar constraints to generating income. Livelihoods are predominately based on small-scale, low productivity agriculture and farmers often lack the resources and knowledge to improve productivity and access more lucrative markets. The cooperative business model has proven effective in overcoming these obstacles through mobilizing local resources to enable small-scale farmers to collaboratively accomplish what they cannot on their own. Effective cooperative leads to improved access to key inputs and technologies, realization of production efficiencies, expansion of value-added activity and increased bargaining power in... Read more
Jan 19, 2016
Want to Eliminate Poverty? Check your Behavior.  David Weiss, Global Communities President & CEO This article first appeared in the Huffington Post The UN’s first Sustainable Development Goal is to “end poverty in all its forms everywhere” by 2030. The UN measures extreme poverty in financial terms – the 836 million people who live on less than $1.25 a day. This way of measuring poverty is simple and convenient, and forms the basis by which most global development organizations now categorize poverty. But while it is simple and convenient, it belies a complex reality of human behavior and incentives that we need to... Read more
Nov 23, 2015
DESIGNing a Stronger Cooperative Model The goal of Developing Economic Strengthening Interventions for Group Production (DESIGN) is to design a better cooperative development model in Uganda by working with rural smallholders to understand their motivations and expectations for joining cooperatives. The program assesses individual’s “willingness to cooperate” used as a proxy for “trust,” to understand the drivers of cooperation and to assess how trust forms and/or changes overtime within a cooperative. With these insights, the DESIGN program can create cooperative strategies that lead to better outcomes for members and more sustainable cooperative enterprises. Learn more about DESIGN and the challenges of the... Read more
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