The Uganda Institute of Bank and Financial Services has opened nominations for the green finance awards which seek to reward members of the public who have gone an extra mile in participating in green smart initiatives or businesses.
Speaking on Monday, UIBFS CEO, Goretti Masadde said throughout 2023, players in the financial services sector have run a saving challenge where staff if different organisations have collected money which will go towards boosting the most befitting women or youth led green smart initiatives.
“The financial services sector has been put to task to fund green smart activities in the country. The world is looking at us to see who we are funding. With this initiative, we want to see that we immerse ourselves with the idea. If the bankers merge ourselves in the whole idea of environmental change and being climate smart, then it will be easy to fund climate smart projects,” Masadde said.
“We would like to make sure these businesses are sustainable in one way or another.”
According to Patricia Amito, the Uganda Bankers Association (UBA)’s head of communications and corporate affairs, the initiative is aimed at raising awareness amongst bankers and the public about the importance of saving but also green smart initiatives.
“We want to contribute towards environmental conservation and reducing negative impacts of climate change which we are all alive to. As the banking sector we thought one the key issues to raise awareness about is climate change . The proceeds from this savings challenge will go towards a Ugandan business led by a woman, group of women or youths that is able to show that they are purposing to address climate change challenges,” Amito said.
She noted that with the savings from the various financial institutions in the country, they will fund a smart initiative including one making briquettes, energy conservation, conservation of water or solar financing.
“What we are saying that we can come together as an industry, collect money and then put it towards a one industry cause which gives us big impact and positions us to be alive to some of the causes of what we are seeing in the country.”
Amito said their main aim is seeing this initiative continue for many years and not a one day off.
“We want to see more ideas come up and more businesses supported in the angle of being green smart and conserving the environment to promote livelihoods of the people we serve as the financial services industry.”
According to the UIBFS CEO, Goretti Masadde, the challenge has so far collected shs36 million with four institutions yet to contribute.
She noted that they will award each of the six winners with shs5 million in support to their businesses in the categories of recycling, renewable energy, smart agriculture, smart building and energy conservation among others.
Masadde said the nomination is open to individuals, groups of women or youth business proprietors, investors, founders or any stakeholders involved in innovative green projects.
She said projects should demonstrate a focus on climate mitigation, climate adaptation, biodiversity conservation , good savings and financial discipline.