Nancy Akumu


Having lost both parents to AIDS, Nancy was raised by her grandmother. In order to make ends meet, they used sledge hammers to break up quarry stones to sell to road crews. Despite attempts to keep her safe, Nancy narrowly escaped abduction twice by the rebel army.

Unable to pay for the last two years of high school, the Ugandan NGO United Youth Action for Progress (UYAP) was able to assist financially. Nancy graduated from high school first in her class. On this basis she was accepted to Makerere University in Kampala as a work-study grant student in the department of forestry.

Director of ChildrenUP, Charlie Laliberte, first met Nancy in June, 2008 and was impressed with her dedication to education and her resourcefulness.
ChildrenUP supported Nancy with her living expenses as she completed her university degree.


Nancy Akumu started her professional career as a Research Assistant with BBC World Service Trust while at Makerere University. Immediately she completed her first degree in Forestry, she volunteered with Opportunities for Environment Planning (OPEP) Consult Ltd- Kampala and later became an Environment Officer in that same consultancy firm. She worked in partnership for various local and international consultancy firms in Uganda including COWI Ltd, VSHydro Ltd, Uganda Investment Authority (UAI), Green Label Services (GLS), Uganda Coffee Processing Industry (UGACOF), among others. Later, she started a forestry business with Global Woods Uganda and still progressing well. This business was aimed to help her family members in paying school fees for her young siblings. Presently, she received an Environmental training opportunity as a Young Environmental Trainee with WWF (World Wide Fund for nature)-Uganda Country Office for a period of six months i.e. from June-December 2012.

nancyakumu2012-13: Nancy Akumu is working on her master’s degree in climate change. She has been awarded a scholarship at Makerere University. She is active in combating the effects of climate change in Uganda, securing land and organizing groups planting trees. ChildrenUP has been a proud sponsor of her education over the years. She now is able to support the primary and secondary educations of four of her relatives.

“After my master’s degree I look forward to new opportunities having been recognized by various worldwide institutions and organizations.”



Children UP is excited. Nancy, our first university graduate has started her own forestry business fighting climate change...AND... she has been hired to do a three week Environmental Impact Assessment for a proposed road near the border with Tanzania. All this AND she does part-time translating for the BBC!

We are very proud of her accomplishments. Her entrepenurial skills and her knowledge serve her well as she makes her way in a difficult economy and assists her family and others.


"This is just unbelievable! I can't hold it any more. I have worked for a company just for one year and four months but I have been greatly rewarded: I have received salary increment thrice since I began working and I have been promoted to a managerial level already. It is purely God’s sovereign goodness in action."
by Nancy