Stories Lived

From Poverty to Prosperity in Uganda

In a country where poverty is the norm, hopelessness is common and things most of us take for granted don’t exist, Uganda is not unlike many African nations. But Chrispin Lutalo discovered prosperity in something most simply ignored. Nearly 6 years ago, while studying to become a priest, he made the decision to take a year off. It was during this time that he started to explore opportunities to enable him to live a life without poverty when he discovered wealth in garbage. After someone approached him with the request to take care of a plot of land, he started producing vegetables and selling and distributing these door to door in the outskirts of Kampala, Uganda. Soon after, one of his clients asked him if he would be willing to pick up her garbage in return for payment. This is where the idea for his company, Waste Masters, emerged. Within three weeks, he had arranged for a rental truck and started the business with just 3 clients. Eighteen months later, Chrispin bought his own truck and the business started to grow and today he has 2 trucks, 20 employees and over 1,000 clients. He has not only lifted himself out of poverty, but those who so desperately needed a job have found full-time employment working to keep the streets of Kampala free from garbage. As his company continues to grow, Chrispin has plans to employ more people and to continue to serve his community in a positive way.

Waste Masters:


About the Filmmaker
Submitted by John C.P. Goheen

John C.P. Goheen is a documentary filmmaker based in Chicago, Illinois. He is widely recognized for his storytelling skills and for his ability to capture great sound and images. John has traveled the world to photograph major stories and events. Some of his work has included the civil war and famine in Somalia; Desert Storm; the eruption of Mt. St. Helens; the Super Bowl; and the grueling Iditarod sled dog race in Alaska. Other assignments have taken John to Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Russia, Liberia, Mali, Kenya, Uganda, throughout much of Central and South America, Romania, Sudan, Chad, Libya, Haiti, India, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Singapore, Mexico, Cambodia, Canada, Cuba, Vietnam, most of central Europe and most recently the Republic of Georgia and Chile.

John often speaks at workshops and professional seminars around the US and abroad. He has consulted with various television stations, universities, and the American Forces Radio and Television Network. He has conducted seminars at the Radio and Television News Directors Association (RTNDA) annual convention, the Maine Film and Television Workshop and is on the faculty of the NPPA Advanced StoryTellers Workshop.

Filmmaker’s Website: