Food security, Infrastructural Development in Rural Areas and Other Reports
Every week, RuralReporters.com collate reports on development issues in rural Africa and its environs.
This report includes some of our top picks from recent must-read research, interviews, blogs, and in-depth articles, carefully selected to help you keep up with global issues.
Here are some of the updates you may have missed from the previous week:
To increase agricultural productivity for smallholders, it is important that high-quality farm inputs are delivered to farmers on time and within walking distances of their homes.
Based on One Acre Fund’s experience of serving more than 400,000 smallholder farmers in Kenya, an efficient rural distribution network is one of the best ways to do this.
An efficient rural distribution network would get farmers their inputs on time and help them take advantage of the entire rainy season. And because there isn’t enough competition in rural markets, farmers end up paying higher prices than they would if more sellers existed.
However, if county governments partnered with private sector and development organisations and set up grain and farm input silos and storage facilities in strategic locations such as trading centres in rural areas, where smallholder farmers are concentrated, farmers could bypass brokers and middlemen.
Transport minister John Mutorwa believes that although all African countries – including Namibia – have attained political independence, they have failed to develop roads to unite the continent.
“This is on a continental, sub-regional and national level. Even our rural areas are suffering (due to) a lack of roads which are crucial for rural communities and farmers to reach their markets. We must reverse that scenario,” Mutorwa told delegates from about 30 African nations who are members of the African Roads Maintenance Funds Association (Armfa), which is holding its 17th annual general assembly at Swakopmund.
Millions of people in the Horn of Africa are suffering from a prolonged drought that is coinciding with the United States’s proposal to slash funding for lifesaving food aid.
Recently released data from the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSN) predicts worsening drought, severe hunger and crop failures of up to 30 percent in parts of the region in the coming months.
“We’re very concerned by the deteriorating conditions in the region where we are seeing families – whose lives rely on the land – unable to cope,” said Matt Davis, the East Africa regional director for Catholic Relief Services, which oversees a major US government-funded food assistance programme in the region.
Communities in southeastern Zimbabwe are set to have a community radio station as part of plans by President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s regime to liberalise the airwaves.
The Tsakani community radio initiative, based in Chiredzi in the Masvingo Province, is ready to go on air pending a broadcasting licence.
Levison Chauke, Tsakani co-ordinator, said the organisation had consulted all stakeholders, including traditional leaders, to have a community radio in the area.
A local non-governmental organisation has launched a pilot project that seeks to provide women living in rural areas with electric tricycles in attempts to ease their daily travel worries.
The project Mobility for Africa was launched at Shaka Hills Farm in Wedza where some 30 tricycles, known as Hamba, were provided to local women in the area by the organisation.
“The initiative is a partnership between China’s Tsinghia University, Midlands State University, Mobility for Africa and Solar Shack.
The project seeks to find sustainable transport solutions to small-scale farmers and rural communities
The Government of Liberia on Thursday, March 14, successfully hosted a Side Event as part of its participation in the Sixty-third (63rd) Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW63).
The Event held on the theme, “Changing Women’s Lives Through Cash Transfers”; featured a documentary showcasing the impact of social cash transfers on the lives of women living in rural communities in Liberia. In the documentary, beneficiaries including women and a visually impaired man, spoke of how the program transform the lives of they and their children.
The presidents of Mozambique and Zimbabwe returned home on Monday to deal with the effects of a powerful cyclone that has killed more than 215 people across southern Africa. Hundreds more were missing on Monday, and Mozambique’s leader warned that with so many missing injured and unaccounted for, the death toll could eventually surpass 1,000.
Tens of thousands of people were cut off from roads and telephones in mainly poor, rural areas.
Cyclone Idai has affected more than 1.5 million people in Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, according to the U.N. and government officials.