Gold is an essential material in smartphones and other electronics. Its scarcity and unique properties make it one of the world’s most valuable metals. But gold mining practices, especially at the artisanal level, require major changes to improve the safety and well-being of the miners.
Contribute to more responsible gold mining in Uganda
Prevent/reduce child labor by tackling the issues at the root of the problem
Increase economic prosperity with improved mining equipment and capacity building trainings
Provide long-term, sustainable access to international markets
Monitor and share results to expand impact and encourage other supply chains and industries to replicate best practices
We believe in creating a positive impact in the regions that most urgently need improvements. That’s why we’ve formed an innovative partnership with Hivos/Stop Child Labour (SCL), UNICEF, Fairtrade Foundation, Royal Philips, and Solidaridad to proactively support more responsible gold sourcing. By combining our expertise in the areas of preventing child labor, improving working conditions and providing a clear path to market, we aim to work with artisanal and small-scale mines (ASM) in Uganda to establish a sustainable, traceable gold supply chain that creates a better future for miners and their families.
This partnership is made possible thanks to the support of Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO).
Hivos / Stop Child Labour
Project interventions took place at four levels – national and district, community and school, mine, and supply chain levels – key actors that need to be involved in the root causes of child labor at ASM sites. Three goals were identified for this program: 1) preventing and combating child labor; 2) improving health & safety at mine sites; and 3) increasing ASM miners’ access to investment while creating a clear path to formal markets.
Summary of results:
An increase in knowledge among government officials has led to more involvement at the district and national levels.
Motivation centers were set up to support children and youth who dropped out of school and/or are working, by helping them reintegrate back into school. Results showed that 65 children mainstreamed back into school (primary/secondary/vocational), while 86 youth received vocational training.
Among the miners surveyed, 85% positively changed their attitude, including behaviour, towards child labor since receiving project-related interventions.
The main result at the supply chain level was the development of the Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance (ESG) Performance & Risk Management Handbook for Artisanal & Small-Scale Mining.
This project is close to our hearts as it allows us to create impact and actively be a part of the change we want to see in the industry.Read more
Tackling child labor and encouraging fair, sustainable and safe mining practices is the reason Fairphone was born.Read more
Smartphones contain dozens of minerals sourced from every corner of the globe, including gold, which is commonly used in printed circuit boards…Read more
Uganda has a historic gold mining tradition and a large concentration of artisanal and small-scale mines (ASM).
Most of Uganda’s gold mining activities are unlicensed. This can lead to smuggling, human rights abuses, environmental damage and major health concerns.
An estimated 50,000 small-scale miners work in Uganda’s gold mines. Up to 30% (15,000 people) might be children.
Child labor is a significant issue throughout Uganda, driven by high levels of poverty and an education system with limited resources.
For more information or interview requests regarding this partnership, please contact:
Fairphone – Fabian Hühne
Fairtrade Foundation – Emily McCoy
Solidaridad Network – Bram Verkerke
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