Kabarole district is located in the western part of Uganda, some 320 km south-west of Kampala. Kabarole has a total area of 1,844.25 sq km of which 137, 802 hectares is covered by forests. Kabarole borders the districts of Bundibugyo in the west and north, Kasese and Kamwenge in the south and Kyenjojo in the East.
Kabarole district has three hospitals which are government aided – Buhanga, Virika and Kabarole- all of them situated in Fort Portal Municipality. They are referral hospitals and serve five districts namely Kasese, Bundibugyo, Kamwenge, Kyenjojo and Kabarole. But sometimes patients come from as far as Kibaale district for treatment.
The district takes health as an important and sensitive sector because it determines the productivity of the society. Hence, with government support, it has opened up 17 health centres, 11 of them at parish levels. It has 13 health centres each manned by a qualified medical worker.
Agriculture is the heart of the district’s economy. The district grows both food crops and cash crops. The common food crops include maize, finger millet, beans, bananas, cassava, yams, potatoes, cabbages and tomatoes.
Despite the fact that most farmers practice a subsistence type of farming, there is always some surplus that is sold to both internal and external markets.
The cash crops include tea and Robusta coffee which contribute a substantial percentage to the
National economy. The district is also among the few districts in Uganda which grow high quality tea, a huge percentage of which is sold for cash.
Tea plantation in Kabarole District.
The land is very fertile and the Mountain Rwenzori ranges that can be accessed from the district provide a favorable atmosphere for farming.
Livestock is the second economic activity to crop production. Cattle are the main livestock item but poultry and goat keeping are widespread too. They provide a significant supply of animal proteins and also serve as a source of income.
There is also pig rearing particularly in areas with land shortages and around heavily populated centres.
The district also has benefited from the 1,187 colonial coffee trees per sub-county from the Uganda Coffee Development Authority to help revive coffee growing that had been affected by the coffee wilt disease.
The agriculture sector is, however, affected by the problem of low funding from the government, which has made the extension services inefficient. Lack of hybrid seeds and fertilizers as well as long distances to the market for some commodities are also challenges in the agriculture sector.
Just like other districts in the country, Kabarole district has successfully increased the enrollment in primary schools following introduction of the government’s Universal Primary Education (UPE) programme.
Currently, the district has 119 primary schools, 24 secondary schools, three teacher training colleges and one national technical institute at Kichwamba.
Author: Sandra Nans