Butakoola Village Association for Development


About us:

BUVAD is a volunteer run and indigenous founded organization, which with a humble beginning started its work, with initiative from concerned born-children of the area. On realizing the challenges that their community always faced, these born-children undertook numerous sensitizations by the central government and were prompted to set up a non profit organization through which they would be able to collectively address the identified community challenges for a better life.

Butakoola Village Association for Development (BUVAD) is a not for profit organization Reg No: S.5914/8930, which started its Non profit activities way back in 2000, got registered under the Gender and Culture Department of Kayunga District in Uganda (E.A) as a Community Based Organization (CBO) operational in Kayunga Sub County in 2006 and was approved by the NGO board of Uganda as a Non Governmental Organization operational in Kayunga District, since May 2011.

Our Vision: BUVAD has a vision of realizing an improved standard of living for the people of Kayunga District and Uganda as a whole.

Our Mission: To promote human values for the people of Kayunga so that they may realise their full potential towards development for a sustainable living in future.


We are grateful for your interest in volunteering at BUVAD, we assume you will go through the project pages and familiarize yourself with our programmes.  As you may notice, there are many hands on projects and categories for workshops.  This page will help you through the process of making that decision to email us an application and come to work in the beautiful Ugandan countryside with a very grateful community. 

 Presently, BUVAD is a volunteer run organization with no paid staff.  Many of the volunteer programmes BUVAD operates are designed around the length of time a person might stay on as a volunteer.  There is room for both long and short-term volunteers to run workshops and work on other projects.

BUVAD is aware of the many volunteer opportunities that exist in Africa and wants to make your decision to come to Uganda as straightforward and painless as possible.  Many non-profits running on volunteer time and effort leave many questions unanswered, and the process of making that decision is harder than it should be.  BUVAD intends to make as much information possible on the front end in an attempt to make this a more transparent process.

 There is a lot of room for independence and decision-making when you volunteer for BUVAD.  While BUVAD has set up specific subjects in its programmes for implementation, BUVAD answers to its community and is able to change as the communities' needs change.  This enables you, as a volunteer working in the field, to be the eyes and ears of BUVAD.  As you design your programme, you have the freedom to react as you see fit.

 BUVAD assumes you will have deep passion on the subjects you wish to create workshops on or projects you wish to participate in.  This is something that we will confirm as we go through the application process with each other.  What we need over and above your valuable knowledge is that you as an individual are able to act with a high degree of responsibility, love, passion, independence and that you are by nature a proactive person.  We already know by first hand experience that most people willing to volunteer possess these traits.     You can also correspond with past volunteers by just asking for contacts.


BUVAD offers free accommodation for both long and short-term volunteers and has housing located at the projects field office centre.  Our Centre, an offered residence owned by one of the volunteer staff, with sizeable space, has a guest room inside the main house and 2 guest rooms outside the main house but closed up in a wall fence with a lockable gate. The wash room and the toilets are located in the backyard. There is a porch overlooking the front of the guest rooms where you can sit to read a novel in your free time, make gymnastics early in the morning and or watching the moon and the stars at night. A bigger group of the volunteers can be hosted in beneficiary community families that provide a typical African setting.

It takes about 15 - 20 minutes to walk from the bus stop to the Centre, or you can catch one of the boda-boda’s(a hired motor cycle).  The residence is next to Bukolooto trading center that is characterized by small stores for basics and more specific staples like beer or produce.  Even volunteers travelling to stay in families away from the centre/residence will be making their reorganization from the centre.

If you are looking for a place to get away from it all, you will love it here. The residence is very quiet and you will rarely see cars zooming past.  Take stroll down to the main road and make your way to the villages for a nice hike, or grab a chair and some fruit or a beer and sit out on the porch with a book.  People are very curious and friendly and if you are in front of the house, you will have many visitors and plenty of opportunities for conversation. Please understand that power is regularly off rather not stable and during such circumstances the Centre uses hurricane lanterns for lighting, creating a very romantic setting for your African adventure.

For those that will be staying with families in the villages, most villages have no power and the commonly used source of lighting is the hurricane lanterns.

As BUVAD is in a period of tremendous growth, there are many expenses that come with this.  As you make your decision to volunteer here, we appreciate any efforts you might make towards fund raising within your own community on our behalf.  Anything you can donate towards making your Volunteer work as comfortable as possible is particularly appreciated.  This could be books, solar lanterns, screens for the windows, extra furniture or anything you can think that will make you and future volunteers feel more comfortable.  

Our volunteer residence and focal areas are located near several tour attractive locations you will want to make part of your schedule.  Many can be done in a day and some you can make overnight trips out of. 

  • Kayunga Town where you can find music and dancing at the recreation center, cinema halls, trading and restaurants (7km)
  • Kangulumira, includes fishing and the Kalagala Waterfalls along the Nile, among other sites (20km)
  • Busaana, along the Nile and includes fishing and a ferry crossing into Jinja  (20km)
  • Bujagali Waterfalls, for rafting.  Good tourism facilities  (40km)
  • Lake Kyoga, located in Bbaale (60km)

Have fun along The Nile River banks at Kalagala water Falls site in Kayunga District.



All of the subjects as mentioned on our projects pages are always open for workshops.  Every subject mentioned is extremely valuable to the local community.  Whether your skills are in;

  1. Promoting the establishment of alternative power and lighting sources like Solar power.
  2. Helping to set up a small scale cooking oil extraction firm or industry, for extraction from sunflower grown in the community as a value chain addition step.
  3. Participating in climate change issues awareness enhancement and remedial initiatives; esp using plastic bottles as bottle bricks to build structures, primary school toilets and rain water harvesting tanks. Waste plastic bottles are a menace to the area soil fertilities, water sources, water channels and most importantly our agro based economy.
  4. Participating in the Safe water supply and sanitation project activities; esp. community sensitizations on WASH skills, working along with communities on hand dug wells digging, construction and installing with a borehole hand pump.
  5. Participating in the Child welfare, Orphaned Vulnerable Children Care and Support project.
  6. Administrative support and resource mobilization (esp. Grant writing and proposal writing, fund raising for organization vehicle, designing fund raising documentaries and office clerical duties, you are welcome here any time.
  7. Training women in life skills, household income generating activities and boosting their household income generating projects
  8. Pioneering the set up of a local innovations promotion centre for agricultural climate change issues related resilience.


Below are a couple of pressing needs that BUVAD eagerly seeks volunteers for;

Set Up Of a BUVAD Permanently Owned Volunteer Centre

The International volunteers' house is planned to be a western built house with tall ceilings, glass windows with modern doors. It is expected to have six big rooms, in built wash rooms inside and outside toilets. It shall be expected to have accommodation capacity to host 24 volunteers at a go. BUVAD provides free accommodation to its volunteers at the available international volunteers residence and like wise accommodation at the volunteer center to be set up, shall be free in a cool environment, noise free, conducive for holidaymakers and a home away from home.

Currently, the set up of the Volunteer Centre requires resource mobilization and fund raising for land (can be mobilized locally), construction material, builders, power installation, furniture, beddings and equipments.  This is a great opportunity for a group or couple wishing for hard work and eventful time in the countryside.  Most of the work that needs to be done requires full utilization of ones’ time. 

An individual volunteer or a group can choose to take one or more of this project activities as stated above. These are planned to be subdivided into 11categories;

1-      Land acquisition/ community mobilization to donate land.

2-      Site clearing, planning and foundation digging.

3-      Construction up to foundation level.

4-      Construction up to wall plate level.

5-      Roofing level.

6-      Plastering level.

7-      Flooring level.

8-      Shutting level.

9-      Painting level.

10-  Equipping of center level.

11-   Power installation level.


This opportunity will require the intending volunteer to fund raise for the particular category of choice and come over to supervise or implement this activity.

The volunteer period of stay will depend on the time the volunteer will have for us.

In case a volunteer or group is capable of raising the total of the above activities he/she/they will be most welcome.

Environmental Conservation/Alternative construction techniques/ waste plastic bottles as bricks for Rain water Harvesting tanks, toilets and other structures' construction Project. 

BUVAD is very interested in constructing a Local Innovations Promotion Centre with all structures out of plastic bottles as a pilot project for construction alternatives.  Many people in the area that cannot afford the locally produced bricks and find themselves with only one alternative of building out of mud and shrubs, creating a dangerous and temporary structure.  If you are experienced in building structures from bricks, here is your chance to come and introduce or get introduced to a very innovative concept of using waste plastic bottles as bricks while helping a fascinated and grateful audience.  BUVAD believes that toilets are a good place to start, as the structures are generally small and compact.  Already BUVAD has built 2 toilets for 2 primary schools and 7 rain water harvesting tanks of 10,000ltrs capacity for 7 schools out of waste plastic bottles as bricks. Each Primary School serves 670 pupils (above). At the same time you are constructing the building or water tank, you will be creating a workshop to transferring this valuable eco - friendly technology to the local community.  You can also transfer knowledge about Nature conservation.  

As the rural community does not typically consume bottled water on a continuously large scale, bottles will have to be transferred in from Bukolooto trading centre, Kayunga Town or the trading centres nearby and this will require some creative logistics on your part.  BUVAD is very excited about the possibilities of this construction, will be involved and cooperate with you in every way to make your project run as smoothly as possible.

Many people in the focal area, mostly elderly, have extremely dangerous toilets or none at all.  BUVAD has identified several areas of the village where public use toilets should be built, enabling many people in these areas a safe alternative to the situation they now find themselves in. 

A simple 15-foot latrine can be dug, the base (concrete and rebar) laid and walls made of brick or plastic bottles can then be constructed.  Here is a perfect opportunity to introduce plastic bottle construction to the community.  These toilets will have a tremendous impact on the area.  The volunteer will need help with this project and what is not offered by the community will be gained by offering a small allowance.  Help will specifically be needed for the digging and concrete work.  As always, BUVAD will organize assistance for the volunteer.   


BUVAD Sunflower seed oil co-op.

Currently, BUVAD has need for fund raiser, marketing and technical/engineering advice.  BUVAD has an ongoing programme introducing new income generating projects to the community in order to boost community incomes and purchasing power. Through the Sunflower seed oil co-op, BUVAD expects to boost farmers’ purchasing power and also sustainably manage its administrative costs using the small surplus earned from the end products sale like cooking oil, sunflower residues etc.  You can read more about this on the specific project page.  This will be one of BUVAD’s biggest projects and if you have knowledge about grant writing, fund-raising, marketing in developing countries and sunflower seed oil extraction-preservation (quality assurance), we could use your help. In case you are interested in the project costs involved you are welcome to contact us.

Small gardens individual community members

Many of the elderly in the area are in desperate need of a small garden for a daily source of food.  This project would require the volunteer get out into the community and make a survey, identifying people who would benefit the greatest from the project.  This project offers the volunteer the ability to work with truly traditional people who, for the most part, live in thatched roof mud huts.  Most of the beneficiaries will be elderly women.  They are very sweet, have tons of personality, and very nice to be around.  The volunteer can work on this project alone or solicit help from community members.  BUVAD will help in this process.

In addition to this project, BUVAD is currently working with Agricultural Extension workers to increase community knowledge of more progressive farming methods, alternatives to traditional crops and composting techniques.  Trained BUVAD staff will be able to advise the volunteer willing to undertake this project and in turn, the volunteer can go out into the community and act as an adviser to local farmers.  Locals will take these advisements more seriously if they are communicated by an outsider, creating a project that will have a great impact on the community and a real sense of accomplishment for the volunteer.


Small-scale renovation of property for elderly people.

Elderly people in the focal communities need support towards safe houses .  This project will also enable the volunteer to go out into the community and make an initial survey, pinpointing projects they feel comfortable undertaking.  Some projects might require construction using local bricks or plastic bottles and some will require replacement of roofing material (roof heights are very low).  Others, like the problem on the houses above, will require a cross-hatched stick construction that is covered by mud.  Depending on planning and what the volunteer feels comfortable with, this project can be undertaken with or without assistance.     

 Arising Volunteer opportunities with us and Network Organizations:

If you wish to volunteer and are fascinated with our work, just get connected with us. An opportunity for you, us being a volunteer run organization exists with us. Also a network organization within the BUVAD network in Kayunga District or Uganda as a whole might be interested in your service and we can get you posted to this organization.


DETAILS: BUVAD requests a small donation of $75usd per week or $200usd per month of your stay. This money goes towards transportation and administrative costs, which are very difficult to get funding for as most grants go directly to programme implementation. BUVAD will discuss the issue of expenses for your workshop/work camp on an individual basis and hopes that you can fund raise at your ease, an amount you expect to spend on materials from your own community, friends or organizations. BUVAD will arrange for 3 meals a day to be provided to you by a support staff at the office. Your menu will consist of local food and BUVAD will communicate reasonable dietary requests to your cook. The cost of food per person is $65USD per week but could be lower depending on the number of people staying at one time and any changes to the menu. Please be flexible and understand that BUVAD will attempt to minimize food costs to you if possible and as this can only be done on an individual basis, we use $65 as a safe base of cost. Many organizations see volunteers as a potential cash cow and are guilty of charging extreme rates. BUVAD makes every effort to keep your costs to a minimum, as it is your talent and time that are most valuable to the community. If you are interested in volunteering long-term, BUVAD will discuss alternative arrangements with you concerning finances.

Coming to Volunteer at BUVAD

If you decide to volunteer for BUVAD, please be prepared to bring everything you need for your workshops with you. BUVAD will help you find everything and make transport of them as easy as possible. Think through your workshop and anticipate anything you might need. It is important that this be purchased in advance as supplies such as paper, poster board and markers in the trading centre near the village are minimal. For this reason it is best for us to plan any purchases in Kampala before you leave. BUVAD’s main offices are based in a suburb of Kampala and staff will escort you from Kampala to the field office in the village 43 miles away. Staff counterparts at the offices will help you get settled in the volunteer house. A support staff will provide meals for you and this information will be discussed more specifically at the end of this page. Coming from Entebbe Airport, BUVAD will arrange pick up and delivery to the village. If you arrive late night then you will have to spend a night at a hotel. You can contact us for a cheap guest house connection. The trip to Kayunga from Kampala is done using public transport. Also BUVAD can sometimes arrange own means of transport once we can afford to raise the fuel to use in a friend’s car. Using public means, you will travel on a bus holding about 50 passengers that leaves Kampala. As these buses leave only after they fill with passengers and it might take a while, so bring a book. On the way back you will likely use one of the small group taxi’s that hold 14 passengers. These come by on the main road frequently and you will not have to wait long to catch one.

Thank you!!

Thank you for choosing to spend your valuable time and skills at BUVAD. We hope to see you here in Uganda very soon and if you are already here, we hope you might make some time in your travel schedule and stay with us for a while. Thanks very much for considering BUVAD for your volunteer service. Please do not hesitate to contact us on email: buvad2000@gmail.com should you wish to apply or have any further inquiry. You can also apply to volunteer with us through other volunteer sending agencies which are partnering with us at the following contacts or Links; If you from The Netherlands you can apply through IBO Netherlands to participate at a bottle brick construction work camp Contact: Henny Petter email: hennypetter@ibo-nederland.org You can apply through Volunteer Alliance at http://volunteeralliance.org/cbo/butakoola-village-association-development-buvad You can also apply through Go Overseas at http://www.gooverseas.com/volunteer-abroad/uganda/butakoola-village-association-development/64137 You can apply via the Volunteer4africa website at www.volunteer4africa.org. You can also apply through the Giving Way website at https://www.givingway.com/organization/buvad


Organizations wanting to send volunteers to Uganda can contact us for opportunities at email: buvad2000@gmail.com 




BUVAD’s current schedule of programs include;

  • Improvement of the educational status of the people in the focal areas.
  • Promoting the set up of income generating activities
  • Improving the health services in the focal areas
  • Women and child rights advocacy
  • Establishing alternative sources of power (Solar, Biogas, and Thermal)
  • Support and care for the Orphaned – Vulnerable Youths and Children
  • Water and Sanitation
  • Women Micro Loan Programme
  • Commercial agriculture
  • Networking and partnership with related agencies
  • Sunflower growing for cooking oil extraction
  • Climate Change Issues awareness enhancement and remedial initiatives.



Kayunga District has a total population of 294,613 people, of which 143,099 are male and 151,514 are female. 274,629 (93.3%) people of the District population dwell in rural areas. (2002 population census)

Currently the sex ratio is 95 males to 100 females and the population density is 213 persons per sq km.

Kayunga District has a cultural diversity of more than 52 tribes, some of which are immigrants from the neighboring countries like Rwanda, Burundi, Congo, Somalia, Kenya, Sudan, Tanzania and as far away as India.

 The life lead by the people in this area and Kayunga District as a whole is quite unacceptable with limited or no access to the basic necessities of life like; safe water, food, shelter, clothing, beddings and medical services.

We are proud members of Pack for a Purpose, an initiative that allows travellers like you to make a lasting impact in the community at your travel destination. If you save just a few kilos of space in your suitcase and take supplies for area schools or medical clinics in need, you’ll make a priceless impact in the lives of our local children and families. Please click here to see what supplies are needed for our projects .