FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Project Diaspora Presents VIA: VILLAGES IN ACTION CONFERENCE sponsored by Business Fights Poverty and Orange Uganda.

Project Diaspora is dedicated to change perceptions about the poor by building a platform whereby the voices of the poor can be heard. On November 27, 2010, the first conference will be held in a village outside Masindi, Uganda. The goal of this one-day conference is to showcase the grassroots efforts driving economic development and improving the welfare of the community – all with little or no assistance from international aid organizations.

In September 2010, international organizations, heads of state, celebrities and specialists gathered to review progress on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). As you may know, the MDGs were set in 2000 to achieve eight anti-poverty goals by 2015. In the midst of the coverage of these grand events, the actual “poor,” (the object of these goals) were not invited to these elite events.

The keynote speech will be delivered by the village’s LC1 chairwoman, Milly Businge. Mrs. Businge represents this village of 270 homesteads and just over 1000 people. Her keynote will revolve around the development springing up due to the shift from subsistence farming to commercial farming of sugar cane. Kikuube’s first hardware shop was opened by an enterprising young woman who identified an opportunity and now has a thriving business.

Most of the presenters and panelists will be from the village itself, mixed in with local subject-specific experts and practitioners from the technology, education and community health fields of practice here in Uganda.

The conference is title sponsored by Business Fights Poverty and Orange Uganda. Business Fights Poverty, a network that connects practitioners and experts around the world to push the boundaries of how business can fight poverty, is facilitating the day’s events. Orange Uganda, provider of Uganda’s largest 3G network, will power the live video stream.

This ground-breaking conference brings together over 500 members of the Kikuube community, community leaders, development practitioners, who will interact with a global audience connected to the conference through Twitter, Facebook, the live video stream and live blogs. Anyone in the world with a broadband connection can watch the live stream on the Business Fights Poverty homepage; the Villages in Action homepage. Follow the conference on Twitter using the #via2010 hashtag, and on the Project Diaspora Facebook page.

About Project Diaspora
Project Diaspora (PD) is a USA-based organisation established in September 2007 with a simple mission—to promote African Diaspora engagement in sustainable economic activities within Africa. PD actively seeks to mobilize, engage, and motivate members of the African Diaspora to participate in Africa’s economic, social, and cultural renaissance. Looking beyond the $40 billion in annual remittances to the continent, the strongest resources the African Diaspora possess are its vast wealth of knowledge, technical expertise and professional network. Africa’s Diaspora is well positioned to become a major developmental force. In light of their cultural and personal ties to their home communities there is no other single group that is better equipped to generate positive, sustained change across the continent.

About Business Fights Poverty
Business Fights Poverty in a free-to-join global community of professionals passionate about fighting world poverty through good business.  Business Fights Poverty connects over 10,000 people from 150 countries through its online network (www.businessfightspoverty.org), its communities on Twitter (@FightPoverty), Facebook and LinkedIn, and through physical events.  Community members come from a diverse range of business, government and civil society backgrounds to share experience and good practice – collectively pushing the boundaries of how business can fight poverty.  We believe that we can achieve more together – by harnessing our collective intelligence and energy – than we can alone.

About Orange Uganda
Orange is the key brand of France Telecom, one of the world’s leading telecommunications operators. With more than 131 million customers, the Orange brand covers internet, television and mobile services in the majority of countries where the Group operates. At the end of 2009, France Telecom had sales of 44.8 billion euros (33.7 billion euros for the first nine months of 2010). At 30 September 2010, the Group had a total customer base of 203 million customers in 32 countries. These include 144.5 million mobile customers and 13.3 million broadband internet (ADSL, FTTH) customers worldwide. Orange is one of the main European operators for mobile and broadband internet services and, under the brand Orange Business Services, is one of the world leaders in providing telecommunication services to multinational companies.

With its industrial project, “conquest 2015”, Orange is simultaneously addressing its employees, customers and shareholders, as well as the society in which the company operates, through a concrete set of action plans. These commitments are expressed through a new vision of human resources for employees; through the deployment of a network infrastructure upon which the Group will build its future growth; through the Group’s ambition to offer a superior customer experience thanks in particular to improved quality of service; and through the acceleration of international development

France Telecom (NYSE:FTE) is listed on Euronext Paris (compartment A) and on the New York Stock Exchange.

For more information (on the internet and on your mobile): www.orange.com, www.orange-business.com, www.orange-innovation.tv

Contact:
TMS Ruge
Co founder – Project Diaspora
Teddy@projectdiaspora.org
+256 792 134 655

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