“I found hope and knowledge through the training I received this year from Amigos.”

Father of five, Jackson Baligwamunsi from Kitalikikyo in Uganda grew up in a large family where food was scarce. 

“We were born as part of a family of 32 children, and due to our large number, our family land was subdivided into small plots for each of us to start our own families.  Obtaining enough food was always a challenge, prompting us to clear almost all the trees to create space for growing crops.” 

Unfortunately, this ultimately made the situation worse, 

“The soil lost its fertility, becoming dry, and the scarcity of food led to domestic violence in our family.  There were constant fights over the limited produce from our land, to the point where the ownership of individual plots became a secondary concern.”

Through joining an Amigos conservation farming group, Jackson gained skills that allowed him to imagine his land completely differently,

“Planting 3,017 trees on my small plot of land has already transformed its appearance.  Some of the trees, such as Calliandra and Leucaena, have revitalised the soil fertility, benefiting the crops planted nearby.  I am delighted that agroforestry has not only enhanced the aesthetic appeal of my land but also allowed me to generate income by selling the vegetables I cultivate, without resorting to cutting down the remaining trees for firewood.”

Alongside Jackson, in 2023 Amigos trained 300 farmers in the Kaliro district.  Between the farmers, a whopping 846,200 trees were planted over 172 acres of land!  The training incorporated conservation farming practices, agroforestry (trees and crops being planted on the same land to the benefit of both) and forest gardening.  It has had a huge impact on the communities as well as the environment.


Jackson showing the jackfruit tree he had planted


As Jackson discovered, with change to his land came change to his family, too, 

“My family is content, and my children actively contribute to the growth of fruit trees by watering them.  What brings me even greater joy is knowing that having witnessed the beauty of our plot, my children will not repeat the mistakes of cutting down trees in the name of farming.  I am pleased that my extended family is also beginning to emulate what I have done on my plot, reducing stress within the entire family.  Thanks to Amigos, we have embraced agroforestry, creating a positive change for generations to come.”


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