Opportunity Emerges in Nakivale
No great endeavor was ever done alone. No promise can be made with our Nakivale hub without the power, wisdom, understanding and background of the local community. On our most recent trip to Uganda, we had the pleasure of meeting creative, inspiring and driven individuals who have joined us as local partners. One of these special groups has taken the initiative to bring education and opportunity to the local community. Creating opportunity for refugees, “Opportunigee” sees a bright future for many and provide what they can to reach that future.
According to their webpage:
“OPPORTUNIGEE creates a self-organized empowerment and social entrepreneurship hub in the Nakivale Refugee Settlement in Uganda. The space is open for everyone, owned and run by the refugees themselves. It provides internet, tools, learning resources and tutorials on how to use the internet for research and the creation of projects. Design Thinking and Lean Startup push the refugees to test ideas and find solutions to the problems they face and create social enterprises to sustain themselves”
We spent a lot of time with the students and the groups' founders. Opportunigee was co-founded by 3 people, one of them, a Congolese refugee, Patrick, wanted to support fellow refugees, regardless of origin by inspiring and supporting their dreams - and now he's part of our local impact team.
Opportunigee is a busy place with a self-paced curriculum, lectures and talks, with beautiful culture and artistic events. It is an anchor of hope within Nakivale for bringing opportunity to everyone across the planet, and making sure those who have the creativity to solve issues have the opportunity to make it happen.
The stories of their students blew us away. With 40 students (16 women, and 24 men), each coming up with their own local projects to stir both personal and community growth. One student, James, is writing, directing, and producing feature films with other refugees as actors; while Sephora is partnering with Ugandan nationals with access to agricultural land to produce crops for the settlement - producing over 3000 kilos of tomatoes in one season and teaching 5 refugee families how to farm.
The Opportunigee campus is a series of buildings made with recycled plastic soda and water bottles, filled with dirt, and layered with concrete. These are some of only a few bottle houses in Nakivale, and allow for more organic shapes, better insulation, and are more cost-effective.
Opportunigee has formed a creative haven in the midst of uncertainty, and we are proud to partner with them to support many of their projects in becoming self-sustaining entrepreneurial endeavors and moving forward together.
If you want to learn more about Opportunigee, visit their Facebook page.