More than buzzwords, the implementation of these four principles are what makes Musana unique. They are the backbone of our success.
Local Ownership– We believe that the local people hold the key to social and economic transformation. MCDO’s projects are envisioned and implemented by a team of Ugandan men and women who are the leaders of their own community development and empowerment. Our local champions have a deep understanding of their community’s reality, including the greatest roadblocks standing in the way of development as well as the assets that contribute to their resiliency and capacity to flourish. It is with this deep understanding that these leaders are challenging themselves to break the cycle of poverty, empowering the community to do the same. With more than 200 full time employees and 100 additional part-time workers, Musana is one of the largest employers in Iganga. By giving the people the confidence, tools, and opportunities to move their community forward, we ignite their understanding that they determine their own bright future.
Sustainability– We aim to generate 100% of our operating budget through locally generated funds. Our social enterprises meet the greatest community needs as well as sustain our outreach initiatives, breaking the cycle of dependency on foreign aid. We believe that the key to true local ownership is in financial sustainability when the community can take full responsibility for their own development. Therefore, the people of the community can take pride in their accomplishments and initiative in the way forward. Their dignity is fully restored because their capacity to drive their own economic and social growth is achieved, breaking the dependency mentality and operational ties that come with reliance on outside funds. In 2017, Musana’s social enterprises generated 90% of our operating budget. We are almost there!
Social Entrepreneurship– We promote an innovative business mentality that enhances the economic capacity of the most vulnerable communities through enterprises focused on health, education, and skill development. Our enterprises supply a demand in the local market while tackling Iganga’s toughest social problems. In a community that has been afflicted by lack of quality education and health care, our education and health enterprises confront the poor standards in rural Iganga, offering the community excellence in schooling and medical care that all men, women, and children deserve. Battling Iganga’s high unemployment rate and lack of choice, our skill development enterprises present community members opportunities that enable them to provide for themselves and their families. By combining economic and social development, we are challenging the traditional approach of tackling poverty by creating a holistic and multifaceted movement designed specifically to fit the needs and aptitude of the Iganga community.
Accountability– We fight corruption through strict checks and balances and internal controls to ensure that every Ugandan shilling is spent with integrity and efficiently supports the development of the community. Like many countries in the Global South, Uganda has been plagued by the common thread of corruption that has become a part of every day life for the people. At Musana, we enforce a tight accountability system that separates the decision makers, procurement office, and finance department. With a strong accountability system, our Ugandan leaders push the entire staff to be champions for change driven to do what is right, not what is easy. We further combat the corruption mentality by pushing a moral compass centered on integrity. Our leadership team urges all staff members to practice what Musana preaches abiding in Musana’s mission and vision, pointing to themselves as the greatest stakeholders.