The Uganda Community Tourism Association (UCOTA)was established in July 1998 to empower local communities in sustainable development through small-scale tourism and handcraft enterprises, also known as community tourism. Community tourism aims to involve local people in the planning, decision-making and implementation of tourism development activities. This form of tourism assures that the benefits stay as much as possible in the local community.
To date UCOTA has grown into 42 active member-groups countrywide, representing about 2,121 individuals of whom 64% are women.The groups operate small enterprises ranging from accommodation, guiding services, and restaurants to craft shops and music, dance and drama performances. Most of the groups fund a community projects, such as clinics, schools, water sources and literacy programs.