|Area||236,040 sq km|
|Population||35,873,253 (est 2012)|
|Languages||Arabic, English, Ganda/Luganda, Nilo-Saharan languages, Swahili|
|Religions||Protestant 42%. Roman Catholic 42%. Muslim 12%. other and none 4%. (2002)|
|Life expectancy||53.45 (est 2012)|
A country of colourful people and breath-taking landscapes, Uganda is a nation rich in natural resources and economic potential.
It was not until 1962 that Uganda gained independence from Britain. However, in 1971 Idi Amin seized control and for the next eight years his despotic rule resulted in the expulsion of Asians from Uganda, the persecution of the Christian population and the murder of between 800,000 and two million people.
In 1986 some stability was restored, although rebel activity in the north of Uganda is a continuous threat to the peace. The rebels, the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), have for the last 20 years tortured, abducted and murdered thousands of people, resulting in over a million civilians fleeing their homes and the surrounding countries being terrorised.
Attempts to rebuild the shattered country have left Uganda one of the most heavily indebted countries in the world.
Despite consistent economic growth over the past few years, Uganda remains considerably poor and is still hugely in debt to the international community.
Approximately three million people are infected by Aids leaving two million children orphaned.
BMS involvement in Uganda
BMS World Mission is involved in the following projects:
Helping rebuild lives
Deb and Dug Benn are working in partnership with the BUU in the children’s department.
Bethan and Gareth Shrubsole joined the team in 2011. Bethan uses her experience of psycho-social work to help vulnerable women and children. Gareth is involved in community development work.
Alex Vickers, a soil and water management consultant, is working with the BUU’s national agricultural development programme. Jackie, his wife, works with the BUU educational department.
Uganda is a landlocked country in central east Africa. Nearly a fifth of Uganda is swamp, great lakes or rivers. The south is thickly forested, the north largely savannah and in the north east there is some semi-desert. The soil is fertile and agriculture accounts for most of the country’s export earnings – coffee, cotton, tea, tobacco, sugar are all grown.
While the majority of the population is Christian there is a strong Muslim minority. The Christian community is roughly equally divided between Roman Catholic and Protestant.
The Baptist Union of Uganda (BUU) has, as one of its goals ‘Building strong, self-sustaining Baptist churches in Uganda’. There are over 2,000 BUU churches, with 1,500,000 members.