Based on the observation that most farmers are consuming and living from that which they harvest themselves, our intention at the launch of the project was to work with them to improve agricultural production. And this, in order to increase their income and reduce their vulnerability. We want to support peasant organizations transitioning from survival to small-scale commercial agriculture.
Unfortunately, violent conflicts in the Yei region have prevented the continuation of this project, however, not in Maradi. In August 2016, part of the budget was therefore earmarked for food aid in the city of Yei, as well as for those who fled the region to seek refuge in Bibi Bibi, Uganda.
The following activities have been put in place to increase production:
– The introduction of oxen for plowing and technical training will alleviate and speed up the work.
– Providing tools and providing training will enable farmers to prepare more land for cultivation.
– The 70 peasant organizations set up a demonstration field. They receive continuous technical support.
– Farmers are trained to specialize in seed multiplication.
In order to give more efficiency to the sale, 26 peasant organizations have built a common warehouse. The managers are trained in agricultural stock management, warehouse management, and the marketing of their products. Local agricultural prices are brought to the attention of the population via radio so that sellers can take into account market prices.
In July – August 2016, producing the unexpected: Yei, the southern Sudanese region that had previously been encircled the civil war and the granary of the capital Juba, was transformed into a region of economic growth in a few weeks, in a war zone. In July the fighting reached the capital and the rebels fled via Yei to the Congo, soon followed by the government army, sowing destruction on their way.
The activities we have started have been reduced, but where farmers have stayed and where there is more security, they can be pursued. In the city of Yei, 2,400 vulnerable IDPs receive a food package consisting of 36 kg of corn meal, 6 kg of beans, and 1 liter of oil, representing half of their monthly needs, and this continuing for an 8-month period. In Uganda, 15,000 refugees and 3,750 vulnerable Ugandans in Bidi Bidi receive seeds and tools to grow their food (supplemented by the World Food Program distributions). To guarantee their autonomy, Caritas organizes professional training for refugees so that when they can return to their country without delaying their return to work.
Many farmers’ organizations have already been able to benefit in the past from accompanying agricultural activities. As early as August 2015, the 70 most dynamic farmers’ organizations from 6 counties received additional support to pioneer the resumption of trade in their agricultural products. These 70 organizations represent 1,120 farmers or families and a total of 6,720 people.
By suspending some of our activities and replacing them with humanitarian aid, we reach 24,702 people.