This is my third blog and it has been a long since I wrote a blog. I was a very busy with my project and had to do a lot of travel. I am really happy that my project is on track and as wrote in my last blog my wholesaler activation kicked off in first week of September and now it’s is going on smoothly. Yes! I had to face a lot challenges on my journey. But all those challenges thought me a lot of things and it was a great learning experience. Meanwhile amongst all these busy schedule I could find some time to go and see the beauty of Uganda too!.
I want to share my experience on the wholesaler activation in the private sector market. The main aim of wholesaler activation is make some partnership with the wholesalers and make sure that ORS & Zinc reaches the remote places of Uganda at the right time and right price. So that ORS & Zinc is affordable to the deserving people and thus save the children suffering from diarrhea.
So far I could recruit some 30 wholesalers across Uganda and took a commitment from them to sell ORS & Zinc at the right price. Since the private market is a seller’s market the prices are determined by the wholesalers. Here we intervened and made contracts with the wholesaler to sell at the correct price and of course we subsidized the price. So, around 30 wholesalers sell ORS & Zinc at affordable prices. We could see a lot of improvement in the sales of these products in the third quarter. Zinc is now available in 70% of the outlets as compared to previous year. Because of the production issues of ORS the sales couldn’t show much improvement.
I am really happy that my experience could bring in lot of changes to private market sales and distribution network here. Wherever I went the people were friendly and were open to partner with us. I was also amazed with the fact that I made a lot of friends across Uganda , even though I met them for the first time. People were very courteous and few even offered me food. Wow what an experience!
Wherever I travelled I could see young boys and girls walking to their schools and calling me either Mazongu or Mayindi…well Mazoungu in local language is referred to people of white origin and Mayindi is people of Indian origin. These kids were so innocent and so happy to see me. The sad part is that these young kids had to walk long distance to attend school. I could see young kids walking in rain to attend school. I pray to god that, things should change for these kids. I sincerely hope that some good people come together and help them and provide with transportation, good clothes, and safe water and food these deserving kids.