At Ndikyo, we are an amalgamation of social enterprises that apply commercial strategies to maximize improvements in human and environmental well-being, we use a considerable percentage of the money we make from selling our goods and services towards furthering social causes, and our cause is the Landslide Victims of Mt. Elgon region in Mbale, Uganda
What has become increasingly clear these days is that every business ought to have a social entrepreneurial element – as business owners we do a lot to shape the economy, and as a result we believe we have a responsibility to lead the way in combating social and environmental problems.
The founders of Ndikyo, are all people from the Elgon region, and have been affected by the Landsides that have been taking place since 2010. We have lost loved ones, relatives and friends, while others have been displaced and are struggling to start life afresh. The Ndikyo movement is personal to us; it is about touching the lives of people we know by name, by acquaintance, by relation, by kin……our people.
Ndikyo, our motto in Lumasaba language which we translate in English as "I am… the root" is a call that speaks to the individual in need to rise up and initiate change from within oneself, to be the root of one’s own development, to lay the foundation upon which others can build upon.
We have seen since 2010 with the 1st major landslide, Government, NGOs, Red Cross Society and other volunteers send aid in the form of food, bedding and temporary shelter, but 6 years down the road, the people are still expectant for continued support because their conditions have not changed and disillusioned that non is forthcoming.
Though this aid is very necessary in disaster conditions like these, its only temporary, hence our intention to focus on sustainable aid, which though time consuming and resource intensive, is a long term solution to ending poverty. By investing in the development of entire communities through programs that make them self-reliant, we will see poverty rates dropping
To quote Maimonides, the famous Spanish Philosopher….."Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach him to fish and you feed him for a life-time"
Finally, we believe that to the “one whom much has been given, much more is expected” and that the world can be changed for the better if “One person reaches one”. Every individual, no matter how little or much they have, can be a vessel through which the Landslide victims, Widows and Orphans we are reaching out to can be helped, by spreading our vision to others, giving of donations or volunteering time to come work with us.
On our visits to the affected areas, we have seen people return to the landslide areas, and cover up all traces of cracks, which are signs of impeding future landslides…not out of fear of the sure death to come, but out of desperation of being removed from these areas and left to start life afresh in unfamiliar unchartered conditions. There is need to resettle 100,000 families from such disaster prone areas……the vision is too big for just a few. That’s why we have chosen to work alongside the government, to be a part of this cause, to be a channel through which the prayers of many are answered, to restore hope, to save lives……to have heart.
Our Team in Kiryandongo
Ndikyo Project Team
Brenda B. Salira – Founder & CEO Ndikyo Enterprises
Brenda has 14 years of experience in the Tourism and Hospitality Industry, where she started off as a Travel and Tour Consultant with CarlsonWagonlit Travel in 2003 immediately after her BA in Tourism & Hospitality from Makerere University.
She soon joined the US Based Hotel Magnate Marriott International as the Country Sales Representative for Uganda, and rose to the Strategic Account Manager for East Africa and later Director of Market Sales for East, West and Southern Africa between 2004 to 2010, recruiting and training country sales teams and promoting Marriott hotel brands within the region.
It is from these roles where she learned the need for strategy, hands-on operational management and value creation as a means of successful business development.
In 2010, Brenda started Travel Galore and soon afterwards, with the onslaught of deadly landslides that killed and displaced hundreds of her kinsmen and family in the Mt.Elgon Region, started the Ndikyo project, as a way of bringing sustainable aid, restoration and community development to the region
Roger Morgan – Chairman/Founder, Steelheart International LLC, Steelheart International Foundation
Roger came out of retirement to create Steelheart international, with a focus on providing safe housing, water, sanitation, power, food security and elevated levels of income in developing countries. Morgan has been an entrepreneur and businessman in California for 37 years.
Steelheart International got it’s start as a steel frame panel home builder working with an Indian tribe in the Midwest, where the company built panels for 38 houses in plant and created 58 jobs. Formerly, Morgan was VP of Volvo of America/CEO of Volvo Penta of America where he designed, implemented and controlled the business plan leading to growth from $5 to $55 million in 5 years, and increased market share from 6 to 22% of the US market for Volvo Penta products.
Prior to Volvo he was engaged in sales, marketing and dealer administration with Caterpillar, residing in Geneva, Madrid and Athens for 7 years, heavily engaged in international finance. Upon return to headquarters he supervised the sales training program for Caterpillar. He has a BA of Business from Colorado College (1963) and BA of Foreign Trade from The Thunderbird Graduate School of Global Management (1964)
Chris Balya – Managing Partner, Constructions Systems Limited
Chris Balya, a Civil Engineer by Profession, started his career with the American Embassy in Uganda in 1991 as Maintenance Supervisor, and then joined Afro kai Limited in 1998, managing departments of Transport, Operations, Produce and Finance, till finally attaining the position of General Manager of the Grain trading company in 2004.
Under his management, the company set up a Shs4.3bn Cereal seed processing plant in Masindi of 6000 tons per annum for Client Nile breweries from 2002 to 2011, for whom it bought and processed sorghum from local farmers.
In 2007, he was the Project Manager for the construction of 42 units of furnished apartments for client Castle Estates in Kampala, and in 2012, managed the construction of 5k warehouses, 5 silos and complex for clients Afgri Kai Limited, a leading agricultural services company with a focus on grain commodities production and storage cycles and Kam Supplies Limited.
In 2013, Chris started his own company Construction Systems ltd, where he has since managed projects for Aponye (U) Limited, a company that specializes in produce buying and selling, bond facilities and cargo transportation of grains, cereals and legumes in Uganda and internationally. The projects include construction of a 6k ton warehouse, 5 silos and a complex. Chris brings an expertise in Construction, Project Management and Agricultural trade that is relevant to the Ndikyo project.
Dorothy Salira – Chairperson, Ndikyo Yaya, Community Based Organization
Dorothy Salira is a teacher by profession with a diploma from Kyambogo Teachers College in 1975. She taught in colleges in Kenya and Uganda till 1986 when she retired to start agriculture as the Manager of Namunsi Mixed farm in Mbale. She has since 2009 worked on a number of community projects with Government and other organisations which include the training of children and school dropouts under ILO 2009-2010, Supply contract of quality livestock, seed and inputs to farmers under NAADS 2009-2011 and a cost sharing grant with PSFU/BUDS project 2011-2013.
Dorothy is also an active member in community development in Mbale and has held leadership roles in Women Associations from 2009 which include Chairperson of Zibuula Atudde Association, Treasurer Mbale Women Association, Chairperson Munno Mukabi Association and finally Chairperson of Ndikyo Yaya CBO since 2015, whose role in the Ndikyo project centers around Community Engagement.
Aggrey Kyobuguzi – Chairman Board of Directors, Kentim University Project
Aggrey Kyobuguzi is a Veterinary Doctor with a PhD in Management from Atlantic International University ( USA ) from 2013 – 2016. He is the former Chairman Livingstone Hall Makerere, President Veterinary School Makerere, Minister for Employment, Western NRM youth chairman & NEC member and also served as NRM youth chairman & National Youth council chairman Mbarara District. He headed NAADS Youth Directorate for 8 years before setting up the Farm and Grow Rich-Kentim Group which has companies like Makerere Business School & Innovations centre, Crane Water, Quality services international and then founded Kentim KIAT - a business Incubation centre for Kentim University Project. He is the PALITA Award Winner 2016 for contribution towards Empowering Youth in Agriculture.
Aggrey is currently the Chairman for the Kentim University (project) Uganda, under which he has developed training materials for training youths in various business ventures, including Yoghurt Making, Cheese Making, Chocolate, Tomato & Chilli Sauce processing and Wine Processing, making hay and silage, Mushroom farming, Diary-zero grazing, Poultry-cage farming, and Green House farming-Vegetables among others.
As Chairman Kentim Board, he has developed proposals and MOUs for collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology – Skilling Uganda Project, National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS), National Agricultural Research Organisation, Makerere Business School and Innovation Center, EDL Inc US and Steel Hearts International USA which includes a collaboration with University of California Davis for an exchange program for students and faculty in order enhance the possibility for food security throughout East Africa.