As a young boy growing up in rural Uganda, the small-scale entrepreneurial spirit in my village interested me. The banana, yam, groundnuts and other nonfood stuff sellers would procure their wares through purchase planning, standard determination, price negotiations but they lacked supply administration and inventory control. This led to poor tracking of their business activities and incurring of losses, but their entrepreneurial skills spurred an interest for procurement and profit maximization in the business process in me from a tender age. It was my passion for business and the desire to one day help my rural community to realize the full potential of their business ventures through a mentorship program that saw me pursue a course in procurement and supply chain management. My academic journey began with a Bachelors's degree in procurement and supply management and a scholarship from OFID for a Masters course will bring me a step closer to realizing my community entrepreneurship empowerment program. You will discover that my academic, professional and personal life experiences align with your organization's mission of fostering south to south partnership with fellow developing countries worldwide with the aim of eradicating poverty.
Sustainable development refers to the pursuing of economic development actions while averting the depletion of natural resources (Sachs, 2015). Sustainable procurement entails the making of procurement decisions based on socially and environmentally conscious factors like life cost assessment alongside the financial costs (Grant, 2017). It also involves the evaluation of risks value for money and the performance management of the procurement process while prioritizing the community needs (Grant, 2017). An award of the OFID Scholarship will see me further my academic knowledge in procurement which will complement my degree in procurement and supply management (Scholarship, 2017). Therefore; this will help in furthering my ability to offer mentorship to the youth and women in my community back in Uganda on sustainable development business practices.
Sustainable procurement is a strong pillar towards the attainment of the Ugandan 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development launched in September 2015 (Sachs, 2015). They aim at advancing the areas of; people, planet, prosperity, peace, and partnerships. Pursuant to the millennium development goals, Uganda continues to make progressive strides as evidenced by the rise in life expectancy from 48.1 to 63.3 years and literacy levels from 54.0 to 72.2 percent from 1991 to 2014 (Uganda, 2017). Income poverty has also reduced from 56 to 19 per cent and for these positive trends to keep on sustainable procurement has a part to play (Uganda, 2017). Pursuant to the OFIDs mission of poverty eradication, procurement as a sustainable development measure will help further economic, social and environmental development (Scholarship, 2017). This will be through championing for human and labor rights throughout the supply chain, encouraging the use of green environmentally friendly products and support gender and women empowerment (Sachs, 2015). Sustainable procurement will also help in empowering grassroots entrepreneurs as well as poverty eradication.
The OPEC scholarship coupled with my experience as a business analyst and my community development experience will put me on a higher pedestal to empower women, young entrepreneurs in grass root levels and to take part in the poverty eradication goal through mentorship program after my graduation. A scholarship to me will, therefore, be a chance not only for my career advancement but also an opportunity for Uganda to realize the sustainable development goals through community empowerment.
Grant, D. B. (2017). Sustainable Logistics and Supply Chain Management: principles and practices for sustainable ... operations and management. Place of publication not identified: KOGAN PAGE.
Sachs, J. (2015). The age of sustainable development. New York: Columbia University Press.
Scholarship Award. (n.d.). Retrieved February 10, 2017, from http://www.ofid.org/FOCUS-AREAS/Beyond-the-scope/Scholarship-Award
Uganda.: Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform. (n.d.). Retrieved February 10, 2017, from https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/hlpf/2016/uganda
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