In this article, the results of the quantitative data analysis are presented. Through a case study, the contribution of NGOs and smallholder farmer groups as sample rural institutions is examined in addressing four main objectives of improving health, education, agriculture as well as improving industry. The study involved 87 respondents from 40 organizations (19 NGOs and 21 Smallholder farmer groups) from central region of Uganda. Questionnaires, focus group discussions, interview guide, key informants and literature review were used to collect data. The study results led to the consideration of rural development as a critical result of improvements in health, education, agriculture and rural industry in rural areas of Uganda. First, improving health by investing in increased awareness/ access to information sharing among communities, and policy development, program planning and service delivery fosters rural development, yet subsidizing health insurance and finance health services would affect rural development negatively. Secondly, improving education through appropriate geographical scope of the organization includes promoting information and technology dissemination for learning and access to various information; coordination of major sources of funding for education; policy on education for rural areas; conducting research and development and the total number of employees; thirdly, improving agriculture by investing in geographical scope of the organization includes offering basic and advanced training; promoting access to land and other factors of production on agriculture; mobilizing resources both financial and human resources; promoting access to agriculture information; conducting research and extension services; finally, improving Industry through investing in geographical scope of the organization includes supporting infrastructure development including financial facilities; supporting rural advocate for agro-based industry policies for industry promotion; conducting research and development programs; and considering the total employees.
Key words: Rural development, rural institutions, non-governmental organizations, NGOs, smallholder farmer groups.