Supports family with own businesses

After receiving aquaculture education and support to start fish farming, Grace's business has continued to grow. Now her dream is to start a school so that others can have the same opportunities.

Grace is a name we have given her because she prefers us not to use her real name. But she was one of the young fish farmers who participated in our aquaculture project in Gulu and Arua between 2017-2021. This project was a collaboration between Hauge Aqua, Caritas Norway and Caritas Uganda. Grace was a participant in the Aquaculture School in Gulu in 2018.

After nine months of training, she set about the task of starting her own business. With help from Caritas, she built a pond and released fingerlings. She started with 1,200 catfish and 400 tilapia. After nine months, she slaughtered the fish and took them to her local market. She was the only person selling fish there, and the first sale generated an income of 800,000 shillings. This was enough to buy the raw materials needed to make more fish feed, allowing her to continue developing her business. By mixing soy and small fish, among other things, farmers can make their own nutritious fish feed. She also invested further with another pond.

The company grew rapidly

Grace now has four fish ponds. At one point, Grace was selling 15 million shillings worth of fish. But with increased production came the challenge of transporting the fish to market. Grace and her husband therefore decided to invest in a motorcycle so that her husband could safely transport the fish to the market himself. Another part of the income was used to start a small grocery store in the local center, where they sell refreshments, bread, detergent, soap and other necessities. Grace and her husband financed some of the investments themselves, while they got a loan from the bank to cover the rest. They also used the income to send their three children to boarding school.

Want to pass on the knowledge

The opportunity Grace received through Caritas has led her and her husband to become business partners. In addition to fish farming and running a shop, they dream of starting a school for others who want to learn about fish farming. They are saving for the project while working together to ensure a continuous income for the family. 

"Building skills for jobs", as the project was called, gave 1,374 participants training in aquaculture. 62 percent of the project participants were women, and of all those who participated, 75 percent got a job afterwards. Caritas Norway still provides training in fish farming, but today this is included in our food security projects.