2010 Advocate from Uganda Returns to ISHR

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

2010 Advocate Dr. Agnes Atim Apea visited ISHR on March 18th while she was in NYC with the Ugandan delegation to the UN Commission on the Status of Women. 

In 2021, Agnes was elected to the Parliament of Uganda as a representative of Amolatar District. She is the Founder and CEO of Hope Co-ops, a women farmers’ cooperative with more than 50,000 members in the Lango sub-region. Agnes founded Hope Co-ops to empower rural women to fight injustice through agribusiness. Agnes completed her PhD in International Development at the University of Reading in the UK. She holds a Master’s in Development Studies from Uganda Martyrs University. Before being elected a Member of Parliament, she was the Chairperson of the Local Government Finance Commission which advises the President of Uganda on budgetary matters. She also served as a gender and development consultant. 
Agnes said that everything she has accomplished can be traced back to HRAP. “HRAP gave me so much exposure to skills, ideas, networks and people. I came here focused on HIV/AIDS and left knowing that I could do even more to serve my community.” Agnes fondly remembered her mentor, Dr. David Hoos of ICAP at Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health.
She added that the skills and knowledge that she gained through HRAP’s workshops serve her to this day--and in ways that she couldn’t have possibly imagined when she was in the program. For example, she said that she always stressed to the President of Uganda that the country must look beyond taxes for other sources of revenue. She said this came directly from Erik Detiger’s workshop series on fundraising where he stressed that organizations should never rely only on one or two donors. 
Agnes took great pride in saying that she has remained in contact with her HRAP cohort over the years. She said that they supported and sustained one another throughout the program. She was thrilled to receive a hard copy of the 2010 HRAP report and said it would have a place of honor in her home. 
Agnes said she did not want to miss the opportunity to return to ISHR to thank the program for its contributions not only to her but also to everyone else who has been in HRAP. She said that while HRAP opened many doors for her, including a Vital Voices fellowship, it also pushed her to do more including pursuing a PhD and to be more for her community.