Philanthropists in the west have supported artists for centuries as patrons or as donors to foundations. Much less of this kind of support is available in Africa -- not surprising given that donors who focus on the continent are naturally drawn to projects that meet more immediate needs such as famine relief, health care, and improved sanitation.
But much of what appeals to the rest of the world about Africa is its art: music, textiles, dance, and sculpture. Can this demand help to spur development? Globalized markets increasingly bring the rich heritage of African art to consumers around the world (for example, while I'm typing this I'm listening to a Toumani Diabate album I downloaded today -- not sure how many Malians that's helping to employ though).
The story says that the goal of the project is two-fold: train a cadre of world-class African sculptors while providing local employment opportunities "for hundreds." Will it work? Maybe; maybe not. Some creative communities spark economic development but ultimately, sculptors will need to appeal to some consumers somewhere (and the sculptures need to get to those consumers through effective market linkages) otherwise local people won't have sustainable jobs. For now, Ugandans have to wait and see how the market responds to this new social enterprise.