Rubaga Youth Development Association

Profile of the Organisation

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1.1 Historical Background

The RUBAGA YOUTH DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION (RYDA) was established in 1992 as a Community Based organization (CBO). It is now a fully-fledged Non - Governmental Organisation which is registered with the NGO Board of Uganda, as well as a company limited by guarantee without share capital.

It was also established to make an impact on the growing problem of vulnerable children and out-of-school youths rights to sustainable development. RYDA is dedicated to promoting and protecting the rights of children and young people in Uganda as articulated in the U.N. Conventions on the Rights of the Child. RYDA offers Vocational Training, continued Formal Education, counseling and Rehabilitative Services.

Over the past years of grass root development experience, RYDA has realized that promotion of self-help initiatives of social and economic empowerment of vulnerable groups is a key requirement for sustainable development of local communities.

Vision: Improved quality of life of vulnerable children and out-of-school youth.

RYDA's Mission: To promote human values through advocacy and community out-reach programs, Girl Child Enhancement Program (GCEP) basic non-formal/formal education and vocational skills training initiatives for vulnerable children and out-of-school youth in view of building a sustainable community with improved standards of living. The main thrust is to enhance their opportunities to realize their full potential and capabilities.

RYDA's Basic Principles of Conduct:

  • RYDA believes in upholding its Constitution that clearly defines issues on membership, sources of funding, networking and more.
  • RYDA believes in self-help participation and identifying one's potential
  • RYDA believes that every human being must live a good quality life.
  • RYDA believes in strict accountability of all resources, funds, materials and time
  • RYDA works to unite staff towards achieving the mission by providing an attractive working environment and helping them in developing their careers and personal talents as well as security for employment.
  • RYDA works within Government policies to achieve goals that effect the life of vulnerable children and out-of-school youth.
  • Any gifts or donation which improve the status of our organization are welcome.

1.2 Ownership, Governance and Leadership

The policy framework of RYDA is guided by fully registered memorandum and articles of Association and regulated through the NGO Board. In extending development supports to its clientele, RYDA operates in organs which include:

(a) Executive Board:
Composed of (10) founder members and individuals invited on basis of adequate professional experiences in areas of relevance to RYDA. They include: Board Chairman, Treasurer and 7 Board members, the Executive Director is the secretary to the board. The Board formulates policy and supervises implementation of programs.

(b) Secretariat:
The Head office is based in Kampala but soon it will be moved to Buloba eight miles (8) and headed by the Executive Director. The secretariat is responsible for the day-to-day implementation of policy and programs of RYDA. The Executive Director is supported by the Program Coordinators at Kayunga and Buloba centers.

(c) RYDA Training Centres:
RYDA centres is where operational activities are carried out. The centres are headed by the Project Coordinators assisted by the Sectional head Instructors and Trainers who train vulnerable children and out-of-school youth in different skills offered by RYDA.Two support staff assist them.

1.3 Program Focus and Coverage

RYDA's geographical coverage is Kampala District, however Kampala District is engulfed by Mukono Kayunga, Wakiso districts. These areas are reached by Family Tracing and Resettlement, Child advocacy and community outreach, sustainable farming and natural resource management, development training and research, formal and non formal education, HIV/AIDS and community health. RYDA resettles children in other places hence other districts are reached by that process national wide.

The Direct beneficiaries of RYDA programmes are vulnerable children, out-of-school youth and children who are working in hazardous conditions. RYDA's activities are Preventive and Rehabilitative in nature. Hence, both preventive and rehabilitative approaches are used. A wide range of activities are undertaken by RYDA:

1.3.1 Preventive Activities: These include reaching out vulnerable children and out-of-school youth in their ca-coons, and through carryout counseling sessions, family tracing and community sensitization.
1.3.2 Community mobilisation and the training on child and youth related issues as stipulated in UN convention on the rights of the child and the Ugandan youth policy.
1.3.3 Training the out-of-school (vulnerable children, out-of-school youth) aged 15 and above, in vocational training and life skills.
1.3.4 Coordinating and supporting campaigns and actions on child and youths rights both at National and community levels.
1.3.5 Active research and surveys on specific issues affecting the out-of-school youth and children.
1.3.6 Publication on children/youth experiences.
1.3.7 Education support by paying fees and stationery for vulnerable children both at primary and secondary levels in the operational areas of RYDA.
1.3.8 Empowering the girl-child and women youth groups in business management skills.

1.4 Rehabilitation Activities

These include mainly:
1.4.1 Resettlement and re-integration of out-of-school youth and vulnerable children within the communities or their families before and after training.
1.4.2 Vocational skills training and Life skills.
1.4.3 Post training and group formations for the trained youths.
1.4.4 Financial support to some of the trained youths to start their own businesses/enterprises for self-sustenance.


RYDA has excelled in the following areas and sufficient potential, skills and experience to undertake any skills mentioned above. It has also developed personnel as well as other resources for their successes. These areas are: Child frame recovery, counseling and resettlement, vocational training for disadvantaged children and youth, community mobilization and training and provisional of sustainable credit to needy families to sustain the resettled, reintegrated children and youth after training and rehabilitation.

2.0 Funding

During the inception, the activities and programs were supported by grants contribution from Founder members. However, previous actions have been supported by funding organisations/RYDA partners through provision of working materials and financial assistance to the designed programme activities (See the table below)

2.1 RYDA sources of support (1996 - 2002)

Name of Organisation Year Type of Support
Children at Risk 1996 - 2002 Project Financial Support
BADC 1997-98 Project Financial Support
Plan International - Uganda 1998 Double Cabin Car & Computer (used)
Gered Gereed Schap 1998/2002 Second Hand Tools
MIVA - Netherlands 1999/2002 Motor Vehicle Support
UNICEF 1998/2000 Technical & Financial Support & used tools
Children Stamps Foundation 1997-98 Financial Support Skills Training
M.C Maagdenhius Foundation (Grant) 1999/2002 Financial Support towards Sanitation Project - Mukono & girls project
O.E.D 1998-99 Financial Support Skills Training
Catholic Relief Services (CRS) 1999 Financial Support - Food items support
ADRA - Uganda 1998 Food items support
World Food Programme (WFP) 2000-2002 Food items support
World Vision - Uganda 1999 T/Books & Clothing Material Support
Australian Friends
(especially St. Margaret's Church)
1996/2002 Material & Financial Support; web site establishment & maintenance
Redd Barna - Uganda 1997, 2002 Financial Support towards RYDA's First Publication on Street Children/ Building materials.
QUINOA - Belgium 1997-98 Volunteer Exchange Programme
British High Commission 1998 Material Support - Skills Training
CARITAS - Belgium 1998-99 Financial Support Skills Training
European Union 2001/2002 Financial Support towards Buloba Centre
Caritas Australia 2001/2002 Vocational skills training
Stiching Bonabaana 2001/2002 Vocational skills/Girls Loans

N.B: The above table shows both material and financial support extended to RYDA to carry out its planned activities.


3.1 Vocational Skills Training

3.1.1 RYDA has established Vocational Skills centres for the out-of-school youths and vulnerable children both in Wakiso and Kayunga districts. At these centres the following trades are offered:
  • Carpentry and Joinery
  • Art and Design
  • Tailoring and Embroidery
  • Weaving and Knitting
  • Electronics and Electrical Engineering
  • Catering
  • Computer and Secretarial Training
  • non formal (Literacy, numeracy and Life skills)
So far 200 youth aged between 15 and 18 (Girls and Boys) are benefiting from the programme each year.

Special consideration are made to cater for educational needs of the individual child. RYDA divides its children in three categories i.e. (P.3 - P.5, P.7 and S.1 - S4 drop-outs). Those below 14 years are encouraged to go back to the basic formal education and the fees are paid and those between 15 - 18 years undertake Vocational Skills Training.

RYDA uses two languages in instructions i.e. locals and English to enable the trainers to pass on the skills, also in other cases, instruction charts and materials are designed to facilitate the process. Life and coping skills are integrated in the training program. Music as a media of expressing one's ideas is also incorporated in RYDA's program. Trade testing is carried out at Lugogo training institute which is a government testing institute to enable them get a recognized certificate.

3.2 Advocacy & Sensitization

RYDA has managed to publish two books entitled, Street Children "Why are they out"? and A guide book on "Street Children Rehabilitation Process". The RYDA experience and two research/surveys on child related issues have been conducted.
  • RYDA has also strengthened its community based program and this is demand-driven. 230 workshops and seminars have been conducted for a total of 3,600 participants of which 70% were women and 30% men. Attitude of local leaders (Village), municipal councils (K.C.C), security personnel, and media have at a certain extent been changed towards the vulnerable children. T.V and Radio discussions have been carried out.
  • Through financial support from MIVA-Netherlands, UNICEF, European Union and Plan International-Uganda, transport facility has been secured. Land: With support from European Union and the community, RYDA managed to secure 7.0 acres of land at Buloba on which its centre has been built. Though there is need to finish the building plan of the centre.

3.3 School Sponsorship

RYDA has managed to sponsor 205 children in Formal Education (160 in primary section and 45 at senior secondary level). With the help of ILO/IPEC programme and other two students are supported by the Australian friends.

3.4 Alliance Building & Partnership

Through networking both at local and international levels a number of local and International Volunteers have come, worked and shared experiences with RYDA. Notably Volunteers from Quinoa Belgium, France, America, Australia (Internationally), Makerere University, Mbale University and Nsamizi Training Institute, Uganda Catholic Social Training Centre (Local) and other local organisations. RYDA has been appointed as a data bank/information centre for the inter-ngo forum dealing with street children.

We still need to network with all other organisations/ groups/ institute through exchange of experiences, material support, financial etc. for the benefit of our target group and staff.

3.5 Challenges

3.5.1 RYDA still needs to get a long-term funder to support its strategic plans to fulfill its long-term planned activities and programs. With small grants from the above mentioned partners RYDA has tried to reach-out to its target groups, as indicated above. There is need to strengthen its fund raising programme both locally and internationally to sustainably manage its planned activities/programs.
3.5.2 Inadequate funding has hampered its development plan (having a sustainable and equipped centre). There is need to strengthen and diversify the funding to pay staff to facilitate the planned activities with motivated staff. This in the past has hampered the implementation of planned activities as many look for better opportunities elsewhere in the NGO sector.
3.5.3 Empowering the trained youths with equipment and material or loans is still a problem.
3.5.4 There is need to strengthen this area to have a successful story of the rehabilitated children and youth.


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