Guest Blog | ISWA Scholarship Programme - Ugandan Pioneers

Taremwa Sam Rwabwehare is the Founder and Executive Director of UWMAC (ISWA's National Member in Uganda). He is also coordinating the ISWA Scholarship Programme in Uganda. Sam has prepared a short report on the kids in the programme in Uganda.

29 Jan 2020 -

In September 2017, I had the opportunity to travel for the first time by air from Kampala Capital Uganda to USA, the experience  and excitement from visa application to the time I landed at Dallas International Airport is still as fresh as if it all happened yesterday. I was humbled to receive the news that UWMAC was to become the ISWA National Member for Uganda. It was at the 2017 ISWA World Congress, USA Baltimore, where among the so many great people I met, Timothy Bouldry – The ISWA Scholarship Programme Director. Timothy’s presentation on the scholarship programme made almost everyone in the conference hall cry. This was after seeing the so many great and young souls at the dumpsites making a living through scavenging for clothing, food, and shelter. I was so humbled that my meeting with Timothy and his subsequent visits with him to eight dumpites in Uganda later gave my fellow Ugandans the opportunity to learn and benefit from the ISWA Scholarship Programme. Timothy’s visit is documented here.



The photos show my first meeting with Nigeria Edmond, Kirabo Atwine Angel and Ssebowa Arajat and many other kids at the dumpsite with their mothers. Out of the many Kirabo Atwine, Nigeria Edmond and Ssebowa Arajat got an opportunity to become ISWA Scholarship Programme pioneers for Uganda from January 2019. The programme provides a full study scholarship for these three kids. When I met these kids and their mothers at the dump, they were so clearly exposed to the risks associated with the conditions at the dumpsites.


When we first provided the kids with unigorms, Arajat was so pleased that he refused to remove the uniform for any other clothing. After getting used to the school environment, Arajat started to collect and keep empty bottles for his mum a gesture that made me feel so humbled.


Nigeria, Kirabo and Arajat are now preparing for the 2020 term in school.


What's Next?


  • Collaborating and working with all the stakeholders to emphasize the establishment of many more education and training platforms for all age groups thus expanding the ISWA Scholarship programme in Uganda.
  • Working with schools to incorporate good waste management philosophies on the school programs including incorporation of the ISWA Kids parents into the school’s bigger waste management strategies like compositing, waste separation/sorting at the source and other feasible resource recovery programs.
  • Advocating for the closure of dumpsites and building of sustainable waste markets of all waste streams-possible through establishment of landfill/s for an organized waste disposal and trade.
  • Mapping out the Uganda waste management service delivery to establish the overall state of the industry and contribute heavily to the efforts for a strong road map to building a sustainable waste management industry. See more at: 

Special thanks goes to the ISWA big family and all other stakeholders working to honor waste as a resource.


For God and My Country


Taremwa Sam Rwabwehare

Founder/Executive Director UWMAC

ISWA Scholarship Programme Coordinator-Uganda.



+256 782 254 789


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