Bio Gardens – The Indigenous Knowledge Development Centre
Bio Gardens IK-DEC (Indigenous Knowledge Development Centre) is a Ugandan local non-governmental organization based in the Rwenzori region in Kasese.
It was founded in March 2004 to work with indigenous communities and promote the use of indigenous knowledge in agriculture, health and conservation for a sustainable livelihood.
Bio Gardens’ offices are located in Kabukero Village, Kirembe Parish, Muhokya Sub County, Kasese District. Since 2009, the organization has established a farmer’s herbal medicine training and research centre known as “Monik Adriaens Medicines Institute (MAMI)”. Attached to the institute is a medicinal plant demonstration garden, where we work with more than 130 farmers in promoting the use of natural medicines, savings / credit, economic focused conservation (handcraft, bio energy / essential oils, spices, traditional foods and bee keeping), in the Sub Counties of Muhokya, Mahango, Kilembe and Kasese Municipality.
Bio Gardens has an ambitious set of goals and objectives which we seek to reach with our work.
- The first intention when Bio Gardens was founded was to improve and strengthen the use of natural medicines for improved community health care in the Rwenzori and it is still one of our main projects.
- For us it is also important to discover, explore and demonstrate the indigenous knowledge, skills and practices that promote biodiversity conservation and increased agricultural production and display facts about nature and people for social, economic and spiritual development in the region.
- We try to support the farmers to strengthen their economic base through indigenous knowledge, practices and technologies and establish community based financial facilities, which are farmer friendly and flexible to meet small holder farmers’ needs at village level.
- Overall we network and partner with people and other well established organizations with similar purpose and objectives for effective sharing of ideas and sourcing for more knowledge and skills, like the Foundation for Community Development and Empowerment (FCDE), which is US-based but has offices in Kasese, as well as Artefact gGmbH and Discover, located in Germany.
Bio Gardens’ core values are:
- Transformative leadership and good governance (transparency and accountability)
- Quality of service offered (knowledgeable, experienced and competent staff / volunteers)
- Integrity and self-esteem (God fearing and respect for human dignity)
- Team work (creating harmony amongst the duty bearers)
- Discipline and respect for all (respect one another)
In upholding the above values Bio Gardens is guided by the following principles:
- Respect for nature and culture for sustainable development
- Sensitivity and responsiveness to the bio-diversity resources for the balanced eco system
- Reverence of the sacredness of the Rwenzori Mountains
- Good public relations, sharing of information, experience, lessons learnt and promotions
- Compassion for the unity of humanity
Bio Gardens IK-DEC is legally recognized by the Government of Uganda and is registered at the National NGO Board, Kampala Reg. No. S.5914/10334.