Together For A Better Kampala! Absa Bank Partners With KCCA To Support Environmental Sustainability & Skilling Of Women
Absa Bank Uganda has today announced a three years partnership with the Kampala City Council Authority (KCCA) focused on supporting environmental sustainability, the skilling of women, youth, and behavioural change communication.
In the three years partnership, Absa has earmarked a community investment worth shs490 million towards various initiatives under the areas of focus.
“Kampala is the 13th fastest growing city in the world, contributes 80% of Uganda’s industrial and commercial activities, delivers over 65% of national GDP with a daytime population of an estimated 4 million people. The city’s urbanization rate of over 5% is resulting into fast depletion of green cover. Through this partnership, we will support KCCA’s efforts to increase Kampala’s tree density in the various municipalities with an 80% survival rate of trees planted, establish efforts towards economic empowerment for women and youth and invest towards communications that promote changes in knowledge, attitudes, norms, beliefs and behaviours to support the evolution of the city to attain smart city status,” said Mumba Kalifungwa, Managing Director, Absa Bank Uganda.
KCCA Executive Director, Dorothy Kisaka said the partnership will be of great benefit to Kampala and its population.
“This partnership will strengthen the initiatives established by KCCA towards a smart sustainable city as articulated in our strategic plan. We appreciate the initiatives under this partnership that will support our vision of a vibrant, attractive and sustainable city,” Kisaka said.
According to KCCA, 20% of Uganda is urban. Despite Uganda being one of the least urbanized countries in Africa, it has one of the fastest urbanizing rates at 5.2%, and hence Kampala is one of the world’s fastest growing cities.
Kampala’s high rate of urbanization has also presented a number of challenges including loss of wetland biodiversity, destruction of habitats, deterioration of water quality, and have largely impeded natural drainage patterns of the landscape leading to frequent floods in most urban centers, including Kampala.
“As a financial institution, we are cognizant of the large array of societal challenges facing us including economic development, job creation, quality education and impact of climate change. Through this partnership, we will contribute towards efforts to mitigate the negative effects of climate change and support the sustainable growth of the city’s people helping them earn sustainable livelihoods,” Absa Bank’s Kalifungwa added.
According to data from KCCA, over 80% of the trees in the city are foreign tree species, resulting in low survival rate. Through this partnership, Absa will boost KCCA efforts to plant indigenous trees, especially fruit trees that have a greater chance of survival within the community.
The KCCA ED said that current efforts towards sustainability will remain in vain without the support of city dwellers.
“Behavior change is important because as we appreciate the benefits of preserving the environment which include improved air quality, protecting water supplies from pollutants, prevention of soil erosion and filter sediment, keeping surface waters and aquifers cleaner and mitigating flooding, to mention but a few. We would want this to become a collective responsibility improving our quality of life and uplifting the standards within our city. I applaud Absa for supporting our efforts towards pursuing change in behavior to support the evolution of our city,” Kisaka added.
She noted that the city also has a high number of informal sector enterprises mainly involved in trade, transportation, manufacturing and construction.
“We continuously promote innovative approaches to economic empowerment with a special focus on groups that are economically disenfranchised such as women and youth. I am pleased to announce that under this partnership, Absa has committed to support youth skilling with the aim of increasing youth employability and supporting job creation, support enterprise development for women and youth led businesses and provide financial literacy to these groups. A significant proportion of the economic activity within Kampala is within the informal sector and we are in support of efforts to see them grow and thrive,”Kisaka added