Mobility Appliances by Disabled Women Entrepreneurs (MADE) is a non-profit manufacturing organization, established with the primary objective of providing means of mobility to persons with disabilites. MADE came into being as a result of the UN 4th World Conference of Women held in Beijin in 1995.

At this conference, Whirlwind Women International introduced the concept of making disabled women active and productive in an effort to help them gain skills to improve on their livelihood. The concept was already in practice in San Francisco, USA, where disabled women are involved in the design and manufacture of wheelchairs. MADE has enhanced the mobility of more than 500 People With Disabilities (PWDs), rendering them various social, political and economic opportunities.

Aims & Objectives
MADE was formed as a respons to the need of good wheelchairs in Uganda which was triggered by the call made by Whirlwind Women (now Women Pushing Forward). The primary objective being: to provide as much means of mobility as possble to PWDs, particularly children and women with the following goals:

  • Enabling them to acquire skills for self-sustainance, thus uplifting their standards of living.
  • Exposing them to various scial, political and economic opportunities for the purpose of being able to serve others.
  • Getting the feeling of confidence as productve citizens.
  • Sensitizing the communty and government to recognize the importance of mobility and to take it upon themselves as a duty to provde mobility for effective integration into society and for poverty eradication among PWDs

History of Made Uganda
Whirlwind Women, a project out of San Francisco State University, is associated with Whirlwind Wheelchair International, a not-for-profit organization established to promote the advancement of people with disabilities. The primary approach is to establish local wheel-chair manufacturing shops run by people with disabilities to provide entrepreneurial, employment, and social opportunities. The Whirlwind wheelchair designs are based on fulfilling the needs of the Third World using locally available materials.

Whirlwind women made first contact with disable Ugandan women at the 1995 Fourth World Conference in Beijing, China. Using seed money from the United Nations and several private foundations, intensive training in basic tool use was undertaken for three Ugandan women over the next two years. This group of women, including Fatuma Achan and Sharifa Mirembe, founded MADE Uganda.

  • Collaboration
    MADE has been able to realize its goals because of (and would like to extend its appreciation to) a number of partners in extasive collaboration with the core oraganization. These include:
    Action for Disability and Develpment, for providing initial office space
    DWNRO (Disabled Women’s Network and Resource Organization); for aiding MADE in networking with international NGOs
    U.N. Disability Funds; for providing money for workshop equipment and trips
    Global Fund for Women; for unlimited program support
    Motivation Charitable Trust; Wheelchair Technology skills
    Whirlwind International; for esign and operational assistance
    Various NGOs and local organizations, too numerous to list, for their continued support

Email the Director: Fatuma Acan

Phone Number (from USA): 011-256-75-846-591
By mail: P.O. Box 9658     Kampala, Uganda
Contact Web Master/Sponsor


13 responses to “Introduction

  1. I am currently living and working in Uganda, on water projects, and in the course of my work in villages have come across a gentleman that could greatly benefit from a wheelchair. Can you point me in the right direction for a place to find a suitable chair for this man? Thank you.

  2. Paul,
    I hope that someone has been able to answer your question. As an activist at Bikes Not Bombs, I am well aware of the needs of handicapped all over the world that are going neglected. This is why we have helped Emmanuel Yehoba of Ghana to set up Ability Bikes, a shop in Ghana owned and operated by handicapped folks who build handicap fitted bicycles and wheelchairs. I know of no similar operation in Uganda, but maybe someone reading this does, and will leave us a posting.

  3. Paul,
    I did find PAWA, who you could contact to find out about any operations in Uganda. See the link below:

  4. aishata khule

    thank you for the good job your organisation is doing .inquiry if you have any intrest in getting volunteers or interns because i would love to help if the need arose

  5. Advne Tugumisirize

    where can i get these appliances at a reasonable cost. please guide me.

  6. What happened that you people dissolved

  7. Is this group really existing anymore? I am a Ugandan and used to hear of MADE years ago but i don’t know what happened. Being disabled, educated with various organizational and business skills i need to partner with others with the above goal which that organization had and we forge a way forward. But this time we need to be innovative for sustainability. With my mobility challenges, being innovative has enabled me to overcome the problem.


  8. Am disabled in awheelchair. I completed my ordinary level in 2002 and joined a course in computer for one year. Since then i failed to start my own business because i have no capital.

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