One glance at the environment in this ranch and you will find an ongoing agricultural project being managed by the community. This is made possible through the good management skills of Wasswa Joseph, 43, the farm manager of this ranch occupying about 250 acres of land in Kitotolo Village, Mityana district. Wasswa says the ranch is under the ownership of Little Sisters of St. Francis from the Nkonkonjeru diocese of the Catholic Church in Uganda. Joseph oversees the development and running of daily activities at the ranch with a team of 15 staff members.
According to him, the ranch consists of about 60 heads of cattle, 20 goats, 15 sheep, and a number of poultry birds. About 50 acres of the ranch is covered by maize fields and a smaller portion is occupied by a garden of vegetables and beans. As a manager, Joseph says work at the farm is greatly hindered by an enormous problem: lack of a sufficient clean water source. The big number of animals at the ranch, the birds, and workers all depend on an open surface water dam at the extreme part of the ranch.
The water in the dam is brown in color because of the dirt and waste that collects in the dam when it rains. Reptiles, like frogs, are commonly found dead in the dam. This has hindered the general production at the ranch as expenses are high when a veterinary doctor is brought to the ranch to treat the sick animals often. Sick staff members find it hard to move 8 kilometers to Pedro Pio Grade B Health Center for treatment of water-borne diseases like typhoid. Joseph says he addressed the water issue to the top administration of the ranch while he continues to pray that someday a safe clean water source will be established at the ranch. He and his workers go to St. Joseph’s Busunjju Sub Parish Catholic Church for prayers.
"We draw water from the dam using a pump but we have to wait 30-40 minutes to get it to the farmhouses and drinking points for the animals," Joseph shares. "It is physically tough!