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Gaia Movement funds 2 new sustainable farming projects in Zimbabwe, Africa as of September 2021

 

The Gaia Movement USA supports Farmers’ Clubs in Zimbabwe in two different regions - Mutasa with 750 farmers and Chivi with 1500 farmers and their families. They are all smallholder farmers.


Gaia supports smallholder farmers in Zimbabwe. The crisis the planet is facing with Global Warming and Climate Change is already affecting many smallholder farmers as they experience drought, heavy rain falls and changing climate pattern. They cannot grow food as they used to do.

More than 90% of all farms in the world are run by an individual or a family and rely primarily on family labor. Family farms occupy a large share of the world's agricultural land and produce about 80% of the world's food.
Smallholder farmers are the frontline response to the world’s environmental and social crisis.
It is important to support them.

 

What are Farmers’ Clubs?

Farmers’ Clubs are clubs that small holder farmers in several countries in Africa can join with the non-profit organization Development from People to People. They have existed and expanded for the past 3 decades.
The Farmers’ Clubs place farmers and their families at the center of all the activities. Here farmers meet, learn and support one another in finding common solutions to the challenges they face in their region.
The farmers are organized in groups of 50 divided in sub-groups of 10 with a knowable and trained farmer (step-up farmer) in each group. There is an overall Project Leader, who are training the step-up farmers.

The activities are as follows:

  • Education and information.
  • Working and sharing experiences in demonstration fields.
  • Learning sustainable agriculture methods.
  • Protecting the land and the environment.
  • Connecting in the social and cultural lives.
  • Improving nutrition and health and caring for families.

There will be one demonstration field in each group of 50 and a community demonstration garden where best practices are showcased.

The two new projects, which Gaia supports, started in September 2021 - Mutasa project with initial period of 24 months and Chivi project with initial period of 36 months.

The interest to join the Farmers’ Clubs have been great and is increasing as more and more farmers feel the need.

FARMERS’ CLUB - CHIVI:

The project in Chivi Masvingo Province is working with 1500 farmers and their families.

150 Step Up farmers are being trained (and pass on their knowledge) in ecosystems and biodiversity conservation, climate smart agriculture, conservation farming, natural pest and disease control technologies, agro-forestry and tree planting including nitrogen fixing trees, fruit and fodder trees (indigenous and exotic trees), water recharging systems through planting of vetiver grass.

The lessons are theoretical and practical and the step-up famer will together establish:

  • 30 demonstration fields
  • 30 demonstration community gardens
  • 6 weir dams for water harvesting and irrigation purposes

The Step Up farmers will then be trained in crop diversification incorporating horticulture and vegetable production, small livestock production (bee keeping, goats, poultry), entrepreneurship and financial literacy, use of social media and digital marketing, and they will establish 6 tree nurseries.

The Expected Results

All 1500 farmers will be trained in climate smart agriculture, small livestock production, agro-forestry, tree planting, ecosystems, biodiversity conservation, crop diversification, entrepreneurship and financial literacy, social media and digital marketing.

15,000 trees will be planted, 30 demonstration fields established, 30 demonstration community gardens, 6 weir dams constructed.

The Expected Effect:

Improved food, nutrition and income security for 1,500 smallholder farmers and their families through using Climate Smart Agriculture practices and transformative technologies.
Increased adoption of diversified ecosystems, biodiversity friendly and gender sensitive (60% Farmer’s Clubs members are women) livelihoods options.

 

FARMERS’ CLUB MUTASA:

The project is in Mutasa, Manicaland Province is working with 750 farmers and their families. At this project there is a center with a building and land. It will be used as meeting place and demonstration area for this project.

75 Step Up farmers are being trained in small livestock production (bee keeping, rabbits, Fish farming, poultry,), entrepreneurship and financial literacy, agro-processing and the value of using solar driers.

The center procures 2 solar driers for agro-processing and value addition.

During the training the 75 step-up farmers establish:

  • 2 model fish-ponds with fingerlings at Kukwanisa
  • 4 rabbit cages with 60 rabbits at demonstration site
  • 1 fowl run with 150 road runners at Kukwanisa and 150 for distribution the 3 farmers’ clubs
  • 10 beehives at Kukwanisa.

Then the 75 Step Up farmers are trained in climate smart agriculture that include conservation farming, natural pest and disease control technologies and they establish 3 climate adaption demonstration sites, a solar powered demonstration garden with drip irrigation and a drought resistant small grains demonstration plot at Kukwanisa, and they revamp the tree nursery at Kukwanisa


The Expected Results:

All 750 farmers will be trained in climate smart agriculture, small livestock production, agro-forestry, tree planting, ecosystems, biodiversity conservation, crop diversification, entrepreneurship and financial literacy.

10,000 trees will be planted, solar power irrigation system established, 4 demonstration fields established, all farmers using organic fertilizers, all farmers adopted drought tolerant crops, all farmers engaged agro processing, all farmers engaged in at least 2 varieties of small livestock, all farmers have adapted to at least 3 climate smart farming practices, 4 demonstration sites established.

The Expected Effect:

Improved food, nutrition and income security for 750 smallholder farmers and their families through using Climate Smart Agriculture practices and transformative technologies.
Increased adoption of diversified ecosystems, biodiversity friendly and gender sensitive liivelihood options.

Pictures from the upstart of the two projects:

 

 

Preparing the fields

Preparing the fields

Everyone in the Farmersclub participates

Everyone in the Farmersclub participates

The water tank arrives

The water tank arrives

Tank fitted and solar panels to run the water pump

Tank fitted and solar panels to run the water pump

Mustafa with his wife are benefiting from the project

Mustafa with his wife are benefiting from the project

A good production means improving the livingstandards

A good production means improving the livingstandards

 

Examples of environmental projects in local communities, which have received our economic support:

  • Mopane Restoration Project, Namibia
  • Cerado Biodiversity, Brazil
  • Total Water Projects, Gwembe, Zimbabwe
  • Total Water Project, Mazabuka, Zambia
  • Harit Sankalp, Green Action, India
  • Food Security Project, Soyo, Angola – co-funding
  • Connect International Project, Zambia – co-funding with Dutch Government through Connect International
  • EU integrated Water & Sanitation Project, Southern Zambia – co-funding with European Union
  • Pumps for Life, Zambia
  • Environment & Living Conditions in Peri-Urban Kinshasa, Congo
  • Selling 2000 affordable Solar Lamps, Mozambique
  • Biofuels for Development, Guinea Bissau
  • Green Action Project, Ghaziabad, India
  • Solar Energy, Uttar Pradesh, India
  • Research & Development to raise funds for “Training Farmers for Green  Action”, Mozambique
  • Publishing of the book “40 Green Actions”
  • Community Development with Solar Illumination, India
  • Jatropha oil for local development in Mozambique
  • Solar Power to 25,000 people in Quissanga District, Capo Delgado, Mozambique – co-funding with European Union *
  • Biogas to institutions in Capo Delgado Province, Mozambique – co-funding with European Union *
  • Solar Power to 1200 people in Changalane/Namaacha District, Mozambique – co- funding with European Union *

In total The Gaia Movement USA has donated $750,000
For the projects where Gaia USA has been a co-founder to a larger donor, for example Connect International or European Union it has meant that an amount of $20-30,000 has elicited amounts of the size of $200,000- $800,000.