Uganda Women Entrepreneurship Program



The Uganda entrepreneurship programmers (UWEP) is an initiative of the Government of Uganda that is aimed at improving access to financial services by women and equipping them with skills for enterprise growth, value addition and marketing of their products and services. UWEP is intended to empower Ugandan women for economic development.

 The programme is initially funded by the government of Uganda (GoU) and is implemented under the Ministry of gender, labour and social development beginning in the financial year 2015/16. The programme is designed to address the existing gaps of limited access to affordable financial services as well as limited skills for enterprise development and management by the majority of the population, particularly women. The programme  contributes to the creation of self-employment and wealth at the house hold level, comprises of several activities that include mobilization and sensitization of communities, training and capacity development, access to credit, access to appropriate technology and access to markets.

Target population

The primary target beneficiaries of the program are women within the age bracket of 18-79 years. The assumption is that those beyond 79 years are catered for under the social assistance grants for empowerment (SAGE) programme. Since the youth live hood programme targets young women aged 18 -30 years (the programme guidelines stipulate that 30% of the youth interest group members should be female), the female youth already benefiting from YLP are not considered as beneficiaries for UWEP. The programme promotes the integration of the following categories of the women as beneficiaries:

  • Unemployed women.
  • Vulnerable groups e.g. single young mothers, widows and gender-based violence survivors
  • Women with disabilities
  • Women living with HIV / AIDS
  • Women heading house holds
  • Women slum dwellers
  • Women living in hard to reach areas such as on island and ethnic minorities

 Eligibility criteria

 The women groups enterprise eligibility criteria include the following:

  1. The beneficiaries fall within the age bracket of 18-65 years. Evidence may be sought through relevant d documents such as National Identity card and other relevant document or testimonies of peers, elders and opinion leaders with in the communities where the persons ordinarily reside.
  2. All the members of the women Group are Bonafede residents of the village, parish Sub County under which the enterprise is being approved.
  3. All the women Groups are transiently selected in a community participatory process based on the selection criteria set by the programme.
  4. Evidence that the members of the women group fully participated in the identification and planning processes for the enterprise and group formulation shall be voluntary.
  5. There should be evidence that the enterprise selected has under gone adequate viability and sustainability analysis. Guided by the technical experts within clear business plan and repayment plan for revolving fund.
  6. Evidence that the enterprise selected has under gone all the required stages for enterprise generation as provided for in the guideline issued by the ministry of gender, Labour and social development. The stages include appraisal and approval by the sub county and district local governments respectively.
  7. The enterprise must have a clear physical address / location.  Where the enterprise requires land, the owner ship and legal status of the land should be established through a valid agreement on the use of the land, land title or rental agreement in the case of land that is hired for undertaking the enterprise. Where land is offered free an agreement in this respect should also be availed.
  8. The enterprise should have a reasonable maturity period that permits re- payment of the Interest - free Resolving Fund within a period of the one to three (1-3) years.
  9. The enterprise has a viable business plan.
  10. At least eighty – percent (80%) of the budget for the enterprise should go into the core inputs of the enterprise as opposed to non- core inputs and administration expenses.

Beneficiary and enterprise selection.

The beneficiary women groups are identified and selected through community participatory process that involves LC1 and Women council leaders as trusted members of the community. The selection of the women to benefit under the UWEP is under taken by the Beneficiary selection committee chaired by the Sub County chief whose members include the chairperson of the sub County   women council and the community Development officer. The respective LC1 chairpersons confirms that the selected women group members are bona fide Ugandans who reside within their respective communities (the catchment area for the group membership may be a village, parish and does not go beyond a Sub County / Town council/ City division).

 The selection process takes into account the primary target beneficiary, enterprise funds access guidelines, local knowledge and socio- economic status of individual women e.g. present income source, and any other support that the women may have received under other existing programs.

The women‘s groups selected for funding are guided by CDO and relevant sector experts to decide on the most viable enterprise based on viability, marketability and sustainability. All women group members agree on the final enterprise for which a proposal is develope

Kamuli District started implementing the program in FY 2015/16 and It was among the pilot districts in the country. It has received UWEP funds as follows;-



Amount received

No. of groups

























A total of 89 women groups have so far benefited in the district, with 1018 women across the District.

The chairperson of Butimbito 11A women produce and the husband in Wankole Sub County resting on the sofa set acquired from the profits of UWEP funds.

M&E officials from ministry of gender with women group members of Nawandyo central women produce in Wankole Sub County

Ministry of gender program coordinator and the UWEP focal person monitoring one of the women projects for Bukamira women banana growing in Kitayunjwa sub county

Coordination team from ministry of Gender with the district UWEP focal person engaging group members of Busibe women tents and chairs in Kitayunjwa sub county during a monitoring visit

The district UWEP focal person and the CDO during support supervision in Nabwigulu sub county


The district UWEP focal person during a training on group dynamics for UWEP beneficiaries in Kiwolera

The District UWEP focal person (extreme right) and the CDO during a verification exercise for women group members in Bugulumbya sub count

The District UWEP focal person (third right) and the CDO (extreme right) during a verification exercise for women group members in Kagumba sub county


The District UWEP focal person sensitizing community members on existing government programs and opportunities in Namasagali sub county