URDT was founded to address the missing link in development programmes, the merger of:
- Truly functional education;
- Consciousness and conscience raising;
- Skills training;
- Rural development interventions.
with the intent of empowering marginalized people living in rural communities in Uganda.
Since 1987, URDT has evolved, applied and tested a rural development methodology based on the principles of the creative process and systems thinking.
Rural development requires a resource base of people who are catalysts, subject matter specialists and energizers to work alongside marginalized communities to make change happen. To that effect, URDT:
1. Has founded formal innovative education institutions that train young people to become catalysts of change by using the URDT methodology:
The award winning URDT Girls School that uses the 2-generation approach to education;
The award winning URDT Institute for Vocational Training and Youth Leadership
The URDT Institute was established in 1993 and its aim is to economically empower the youth, by creating a critical mass of all-around male and female entrepreneurs who have integrity and the capacity to improve their own situation, create their own jobs, are responsible citizens and contribute to larger development goals. The Institute trains youth from the age of 14 -25 years.
2. Adopted a primary and secondary community schools to pilot test the 2-generation approach in a community school setting; URDT Girls’ School uses the 2 generation approach whereby students and their parents learn together, develop a shared vision for their home, analyze their current situation, apply systems thinking, team learning, plan together and learn new skills.The school started in 2000 to fill a need for education that is linked to development and women empowerment. URDT beliefs that educated young women are key to transforming rural poor communities into vibrant, sustainable rural economies.The URDT students come from poor backgrounds and are committed to developing their homes while she studies and gets prepared for future leadership.
Although the Ugandan Government provides universal primary and secondary education, their schools are poorly equipped to produce functionally literate, principled, entrepreneurial and responsible citizens and to take care of girl specific needs.
URDT Tijhaar Community School-Nkondo; The school was established in 2003 by a committed member of the Nkondo community. Sadly the founder passed away and the school had to close in 2005 due to managerial and financial problems. In 2006, thanks to the stamina of the students who remained teaching each other, the URDT decided to transform the school into a community school that will
use the 2-generation approach to education and development.
On annual basis, it educates 130 students from Secondary 1 to Secondary 4 (O-level)
URDT Community School Kanyamuyaga; This school was started by a community member who desired to see community children accessing education. However in 2008, he could not run the school any more as the parent were to poor to pay for good educational standards.In 2008 URDT got a request to manage the school while the parents were part of the school management committee.