What is the justification for establishment of Epicentres?

URDT has demonstrated that more sustainable results in improved human well being are achieved when people shift their mind sets and focus on "creating a desired outcome" (vision) rather than on "fixing problems" and nurture feelings of fatalism and powerlessness.

URDT’s methodology has transformed its host village, Kagadi, into a ‘boom town’; and is an inspiration for others. URDT’s graduates have created local businesses and move subsistence farmers to join the rural economy and make good income out of agriculture. The people’s health, sanitation, and girls' education status have all improved remarkably.

In 2001, therefore, the time was ripe to work on one of URDT’s objectives: the establishment of the African Rural University (ARU). Its vision for ARU was an institution of higher learning that was rural based, drawing from the experiences of the rural people and committed to creating an alternative approach to sustainable development by casting grassroots innovators, rather than traditional academics, by educating young women to be catalysts of change.

In 2002 the idea of the African Rural University (ARU) won an international recognition by the Ashoka Organization, a movement for Global Innovators. ARU’s core activity is action-oriented higher education, based drawing on visionary and systems thinking principles, entrepreneurship, 2-generation learning and community action planning within an African development context. As such, ARU is a pathway for disseminating, deepening and broadening URDT’s rural development methodology.

In 2006, after many years of field study and internal learning of staff and community members, ARU with the support of URDT, initiated the first course. It started with a small group of faculty and “trailblazer /research students” and a growing infrastructure.

In September 2011, for the first time in the history of extension education in Uganda, ARU graduated its “home-grown Rural Transformation Specialists (RTS)”. The first batch of Researcher Students, is a unique group of 17 young women who have pioneered the curriculum and helped in fine tuning the methodology for sustainable rural development. The RTS have undergone a Bachelor’s degree course in Technologies for Rural Transformation that included 2 years of field placement. The interns lived in villages in Kibaale District. They carried out participatory action research and facilitated a new thought process that led to the evolution of visionary leadership. As a result, there is improved income and health of particular women and children in the villages where they worked. The evaluation report (available on request) shows that the methodology is effective and that communities are ready to scale up their efforts but need additional support to keep them focussed and gain more competencies to attain their visions.

URDT is committed to continue to invest its human and other resources in grassroots transformative leadership development as a key strategy to improve the living standards of the impoverished population in Kibaale District. Therefore URDT is expanding its extension services through the establishment of Community Based Epicentres to enable community driven development.


The Uganda Project Film to be shown
on NBS on 3rd June 2019 after the 9 news.
This is a film by Robert Fritz, on the new
direction in world development.

URDT extends Cervical Cancer
Screening services to the called hard
to reach areas in Kagadi District
Ndaiga Sub County.

URDT held a board of
directors and senior management
retreat from 6th – 7th/Feb/2019.

URDT-ARU holds a staff
conference with the aim of
orienting staff on the core
principles of the organization

URDT institute graduates are
championing entrepreneurship in
the communities

Graduates urged to seek
self-employment during
the African Rural University
4th Graduation ceremony

African rural university
Students clean Kagadi town
streets and market in a move
to keep the Town Council clean

Robert Fritz
Trains Over 200 URDT Staff and
Community Leaders on Visionary
Leadership at URDT

URDT Cervical Cancer project Launched
in Kagadi on the 26th January 2018 at URDT

The government of Uganda praises URDT
for transforming the youth and the country

Visit Our Photo Gallery


Upcoming Major Events


  • Launch of KKC TV at the media house.

Subscribe to our Newslette

Please enable the javascript to submit this form


URDT and ARU Management has held its Staff Conference for 2019
URDT Institute Students during their Welding classes
Institute Hands on
Institute Hands on
View of URDT Campus
Our Campus
Our Campus
Cervical cancer project
Training Cervical cancer nurses
Training Cervical cancer nurses
pupils in their farms
Pupil Managed School Farm
Pupil Managed School Farm
URDT embraces culture
Cultural Asset center
Cultural Asset center
KKCR Acts as a forum for participation and information sharing for rural transformation
Information Sharing by KKC Radio
Information Sharing by KKC Radio
© 2019 URDT. All Rights Reserved. Home of Innovators In Education & Sustainable Development

Please publish modules in offcanvas position.