Today we share the story of Ruth Namaganda with you. A young woman who is ambitious and dedicated to achieve her goals. Last week she joined as well the Youth Leadership Academy in the Netherlands, where she shared her ambitions and made others enthusiast with her stories. Read her whole story below!
Ruth Namaganda, 29 years
Kibinge Coffee Farmers’ Co-operative Society Bukomansimbi, Uganda
This is Ruth Namaganda, she is 29 years and from the Kibinge Coffee Farmers’ Co-operative Society Ltd. in Bukomansimbi district, Uganda. In 2015 she joined the cooperative after the cooperative offered trainings for the youth to get involved in agriculture. Nowadays she is a volunteer and a youth trainer. Within the cooperative she has a leader role, which brings her economic independence and employment. Additionally, being a woman with a voice gives other women the feeling to be represented and motivated. “We feel we have the power.”
Being a woman with a leadership position has also its challenges. “Men have an undermining attitude and think they perform better than women.” As well: “Women have a lot of roles to play, both at home and at the co-operative”. In order to give women the opportunity to be empowered, it is important to value woman the same as men. According to Ruth, to be a leader you must be hardworking, trustworthy and risk taking. Other capacities a woman must have are being able to listen to feedback, even if it is criticism, and most of all: be able to motivate others. A women as a female leader in the cooperative is important for the younger women, as they feel represented and “these leaders are our role models”. It is important to encourage female leadership in the cooperatives, this could be done by training more women. “A training for only women could help them to open up and so they will get encouraged.”
Regarding the coming years for the cooperative, Ruth expects that there will be an increased membership of women in the cooperative and that women will take up important leadership roles within the cooperatives. In order to achieve this, more awareness should be created and women should be encouraged that they can have a voice. “Girl education, sensitisation and giving more training”, are key to get more young women involved. Nowadays, more and more women are employed in the cooperative and they take up leadership roles. For the future, Ruth hopes to see even more women getting involved in the agriculture sector.
In the coming years, Ruth wants to build a youth learning centre, on a piece of her land. She is very ambitious and wants to become a role model herself in her society!