What should be done to restore the forest cover in Uganda?

Uganda’s forest cover is in danger due to the concerning rate at which trees are being cut down by individuals as well as national and international corporations. There have been some efforts to try and restore Uganda’s forests. However, more needs to be done to ensure that these efforts do not go to waste. Trac FM asked radio listeners what they think should be done to restore the forest cover in Uganda. We received over 3,000 responses.

The Biggest Barriers Deterring Agroforestry Practice

Agroforestry is one of the solutions to the problem of deforestation. However, majority of Ugandans are yet to implement agroforestry practices. Trac FM asked radio listeners to tell us what barriers they face that deter them from practicing agroforestry. We received over 2000 responses that shed a light on this issue. This is our second poll question in partnership with Environmental Alert.

Why are trees important to you?

As part of our Common Matters Program, Trac FM and Environmental Alert are running a campaign that will promote agroforestry as a solution to deforestation. Our first poll question asked radio listeners to tell us why they believe trees are important to them. With 3,325 responses, 54% said that trees are important to them because they contribute to the rain formation.

Government-Aided Private Schools Implementing USE: What The Public Thinks

Since its introduction in  2007, several schools have benefited from government funds through USE. Private schools have generated mixed reactions for their decision to join the USE program. Trac FM in collaboration with ISER set out to figure out what the public really thinks by asking the following poll question:  What is your impression of government-aided private schools that are implementing USE?

How informed are you as a parent about the financial accountability at your child’s USE school?

In 2007, the Government of Uganda implemented the Universal Secondary Education (USE) program. Schools receive capitation grants of UGX 47,000 per student per term from the government for teaching and learning purposes.

What is the most important factor for choosing the school for a child?

ISER and Trac FM are running an advocacy campaign that is part of the Common Matters program. We will collect citizens’ voices on financial accountability of PPPs in Uganda through interactive radio polling on 9 radio stations. The first poll question asked is about the decisions parents/guardians make in choosing a school for their children. 

What would stop you from seeking medical treatment for a sexually transmitted disease?

In our recent poll question, responses we received showed that provision of information and treatment of Sexually Transmitted Diseases are most required by youth. Close to half of the responses (44%) said STD's needed the attention as compared to the other options. 

How effective is the provision of youth friendly health services in reducing the rates of teenage pregnancy?

Although the rates of teenage pregnancy have gone down in recent years, the national average stands at 25% of the girls aged 15 to 19 years is already a mother or pregnant with her first child. 

Which health service is most required by adolescents in your community?

In a traditional health facility setting, all patients access care according to specific health needs. However, this does not cater for the needs of adolescents and young people, especially when it comes to sexual and reproductive health.

Do you believe the outcome of a malaria test?

There are different blood tests for Malaria. The outcome of the test determines whether someone has malaria or not and whether that person needs treatment. However, it is known that the result of a malaria test is not always believed by patients.

Why don’t people go for a Malaria test?

Malaria is still one of the major diseases affecting families all over Uganda. Testing a blood sample is the most conclusive way to know whether one has malaria or not. However, based on numbers from the Ministry of Health, only 60% of the people do tests for Malaria.

Which disease has had the biggest impact on your life?

Although many diseases can be prevented these days, people are still affected by infectious diseases. Some diseases have a minor impact, others have a bigger impact on someone's life. This impact can be loss of a family member, frequent illness, illness of family members, or loss of work days due to illness.

In your community, what are the major issues surrounding the bride price?

Bride price is a highly cherished custom in Uganda. In some cultures or families, the bride price is optional. In others, it is mandatory.

What do you think is the most important circumstance for a man or woman to deny their spouse conjugal rights?

Conjugal rights are important in marriage. For cultural and religious reasons, there is no place for negotiation, discussion or denial of conjugal rights/ sexual intercourse in marriage. However, spouses do acknowledge that there may be circumstances under which they would rather not consent to conjugal rights/ sexual intercourse. The reasons for denial can vary.

What is the purpose of the Marriage and Divorce Bill?

Efforts to change the controversial Marriage and Divorce Bill started in the 1960s. However, these efforts have faced scrutiny from religious and cultural leaders and individuals in parliament. Opponents of the bill fear that the law will change the values of marriage. Those in favour of the bill believe that it is an important tool for ensuring equal rights and will benefit all Ugandans equally.

What is the main reason that more men start businesses compared to women?

The Africa Human Development Report 2016 released 3 months ago by the UN, the report warned that Uganda has to accelerate gender equality by empowering more women in all spheres of development if the country is to achieve the much desired middle-income status.

What should be changed in the way our children are taught in schools today?

Youth unemployment is a big problem in Uganda, and different sources indicate that between 60% and 80% of the young population are unemployed. Many Ugandan secondary and university students are struggling to find a job after they graduate.
Image: wiki

Do you think the Tobacco Control Law recently passed is necessary?

On 21st May 2016, the government of Uganda passed the Tobacco Control Law that will fight and regulate the use of tobacco
Image: AFP

Should the government minimize or ban sports betting in the country?

There are betting shops in almost every urban town across the country, laws relating to lottery and gambling have become obsolete and are not sensitive to the new modes of gambling and the unprecedented growth of the industry. 

How can we reduce alcohol consumption in Uganda?

Annually, the average Ugandan consumes 23.7 liters of pure alcohol, with almost 90% of this being unregulated alcohol that is illegally sold, such as home-brewed Waragi.

What is your source of water?

The Ugandan water supply system has made substantial progress in the last 10 years. However, one-third of the population still lacks access to safe water.

Which of the following describes your view of police best?

The Uganda Police’s main duty is to maintain law and order, and work to make the Ugandan people feel safe. In recent times, the police force has been in the limelight for brutal treatment of the citizens and corruption.

What should be done about the large amount of refugees in Uganda?

Uganda has a for many years been hosting refugees from its neighboring countries. Ethiopians, Eritreans, Sudanese, Congolese, Rwandese and recently also Burundian refugees, fleeing war, violence or persecution in their home countries, have all found shelter in Uganda. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Uganda is currently hosting more than 500 000 people, making it the third largest refugee-hosting country in Africa after Kenya and Ethiopia. 

Do you think we are going to benefit from regional economic integration?

The East African Community (EAC) is an intergovernmental organisation composed of six countries in eastern Africa: Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, South Sudan, and Uganda. Having collapsed in 1977, it was revived on 7 July 2000. In 2010 EAC launched its own common market for goods, labor, and capital within the region, with the goal of creating a common currency and eventually a full political federation.

What kind of agricultural support do you prefer?

In Uganda, only 2% of the national budget is spent on Agriculture. However, agriculture is the backbone of the Ugandan economy and accounts for 23% of the GDP (GDP is the sum of all economic activity in Uganda). More than 70% of all Ugandans are working in agriculture, and the large majority of them are subsistence farmers that produce just enough to cater for their families. 

Do you think mob justice is acceptable?

The Ugandan Human Rights Commission has reported an “unprecedented rise” in mob justice cases in recent years 

What should be done to ensure the well-being of Ugandans working in the Middle East?

Since 2006, more than 42,000 Ugandans have gone to the Middle East through labor exporting agencies. Many cases of abuse against Ugandans have been reported.

Who should teach our Children about Sexual Education?

More than 3000 Radio listeners across Uganda suggest.

Trac FM visits partner radio stations in Northern Uganda

Trac FM teams visits partner stations in Arua, Gulu, Lira and Soroti

Infographic: has the security situation in Somalia improved in 2014?

See below a visual representation of the results of a poll about the security situation in Somalia from January 2015. This joint poll of 5 radio stations is part of Trac FM's partnership with Free Press Unlimited.

20% of Trac FM respondents say they couldn't register to vote

A new Trac FM poll shows that 20% of Ugandans who tried to register to vote in 2016 were unable to. Another 15% didn't register because they had no intention of voting. 

52% of respondents in Somalia think EU is part of UN

With the many international organizations working alongside each other in Somalia, it can be hard to tell who does what. This week, radio stations in Mogadishu, Hiraan, and Puntland asked their listeners if they know what the European Union actually is. 8.303 people sent us their answer.

How many Ugandan children are not in school?

Over the years, more and more Ugandan children are going to school. More and more girls are enrolling as well, and the introduction of the Universal Primary Education scheme in 2007 had given more children access to education than ever before. But there are still some who are being left behind.

Why are Uganda's drainage systems inefficient?

In September 2014, a motorcycle rider and his passenger died as a result of being washed away by floods into an open draining channel. This, sadly, is not uncommon. During heavy rainfall, there is frequent flooding and risk of accidents as a result of Uganda's poor draining system.

Increasing domestic violence in Uganda

Uganda's State Minister for Gender and Culture, Rukia Nakadama, has on public occasions lamented the high rate of gender based violence towards women. A recent poll run in Arua gives testament to her claims of the rise of this vice.

Trac FM selected for Multiple Journalism Initiative

Multiple Journalism believes journalism of the digital age is not a threat to the independence and quality of professional journalism, but a liberation from corporate control.

Trac FM is proud to have been selected as one of the case studies for the Multiple Journalism initiative.

On teenage pregnancy in Uganda - 49% of girls under 18 are lured into marriage

Members of parliament want the consent age in Uganda to be increased to 21 yrs from 18 years. The MPs say that teenagers over indulge in sexual activities and yet for some of the girls their bodies are not yet fully developed to have a baby!

World Radio Day Poll Question: Opinions of Ugandans

To many people in Uganda, radio is the first thing in the morning and last thing in the night. Radio has become a very important tool in our day-to-day life because its a source of news, entertainment and for many, radio enables them to participate in discussions. Radio is also a very portable tool and some people admit they love it because of this fact.

Post-2015 Agenda: Access to information and independent media are essential to development

TRAC FM has joined dozens of development media organisations to call on the Open Working Group to fully integrate the governance recommendations of the UN High Level Panel of Eminent Persons Report (A New Global Partnership: Eradicate Poverty and Transform Economies through Sustainable Development) into the proposed Post- 2015 Sustainable Development Goals

RICNET uses TRAC FM data to influence change in their communities

“Using results from a radio poll, we engaged school managements, parents and other CSO to start a campaign for parents supporting feeding pupils in schools. This campaign has been well received and so far 23 schools have taken it for candidate classes of Primary Six and Seven” John Silco the Director RICNET said.

Press release: TRAC FM, Farm Radio and HarvestPlus team up

TRAC FM teams up with Farm Radio International and HarvestPlus to raise awareness about the importance of consuming Orange-fleshed sweet potatoes (OFSPs) among Ugandans, by putting the power of interactive radio drama to work.

TRAC FM receives grant from the Indigo Trust

TRAC FM is very thankful for the awarded grant from The Indigo Trust, a trust which mainly focuses on innovation, transparency and citizen empowerment.

TRAC FM is nominated for the Data-Journalism awards!

TRAC FM is honored to be selected for the Data Journalism Awards under the category  "Data-driven applications, national/international". 

PC Tech magazine interview

PC Tech Magazine interviewed TRAC FM founder and director Wouter Dijkstra. 

TRAC FM partners with the UDN

TRAC FM is delighted to partner with the UDN, the Uganda Debt Network. 

Trac FM expands to Rwenzori region

Recently Trac FM partnered with Rwenzori Information Centers Network (RIC-NET) an indigenous Network of Information Centers situated in the Rwenzori region.

Radio Pacis in Gulu does its first polls

Radio Pacis is a new station in Gulu (Northern Uganda) and it will run a weekly talk-show where TRAC FM technology will be used to involve people in giving objective and data driven feedback to guests and to others who are tuned in.

Video: How Trac FM works

This video shows how the TRAC FM platform is being used at one of our media partners: Community Radio Wa. 

TRAC FM software testing

Last week we tested the first draft of the TRAC FM software with students from Makarere University Business School in Kampala. 

Listen to one of our Talk shows!

How to get involved

With over 1,200,000 individual participants in 3 countries, Trac FM has proven it's successful concept. Trac FM is now sharing it's knowledge, experience and our software platform with NGO's and media organisations around the world. These partners use Trac FM in their own research, M&E campaigns and as an early warning system in humanitarian relief efforts. Get in touch with us to find out more on partnerships: info@tracfm.org

Video: Trac FM in Uganda

Valerie Amos, UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, about Trac FM:

Valerie Amos UN OCHA highlights Trac FM in speech

 "To be effective we must listen to people (...) using for example TRAC FM to conduct country-wide citizen centred interactive radio polls."

Speech at Canadian Humanitarian Conference, 5 December 2015

Contact Us

Physical Address: CEEWA Building, Block 244, Kiwafu Road, Kansanga
Email: info@tracfm.org
Tel: +256 794 699807 and +256 794 279079