A closer look at the farmers whose lives are being changed by P4P.
In Guatemala, poverty and malnutrition are widespread. Chronic malnutrition or stunting occurs among 50 percent of children under the age of five, the fourth highest in the world. The Maíz Chapín contra el hambre project seeks to address malnutrition by promoting the consumption of nutritious foods and food supplements. It will also bolster the Government of Guatemala’s efforts to fight hunger and rural poverty by supporting P4P’s work in developing the capacities of smallholder farmers and their organizations.
Smallholders in Uganda are often unable to access formal markets. One of the challenges facing them is poor quality grain caused by the lack of appropriate practices and modern warehouses. Because of this, one of P4P’s key activities in Uganda has been to work with farmers and private sector actors to improve storage facilities through the provision of modern grain processing equipment, which is used to clean, dry, grade and bag grain.
One of P4P’s main activities in Nicaragua has been to provide capacity building among smallholder farmers and to increase their productivity, achieve better yields, and grow higher quality products. The use of agricultural inputs, such as fertilizers, insecticides and improved seeds, are key to achieving all of these goals. Throughout the pilot, P4P and partners such as Disagro and Formunica, have arranged training sessions addressing the use and importance of agricultural inputs.
The Mwandama farmer’s organization is located in the Zomba district in southern Malawi. It was formed in 2005 with initial support from the Millennium Village Project. Mwandama first sold to WFP in early 2010, and is now among the most active and successful farmers’ organisations on the P4P roster. The organization has been awarded a total of 11 contracts, amounting to nearly 750 mt of commodities, valued at US$176,000.
The agreement between WFP and NFRA, signed in August 2012, formalized the understanding that WFP will purchase food from the NFRA, who in turn will buy from smallholder farmers’ organizations, including those linked to the Purchase for Progress (P4P) initiative.Supporting smallholder farmers to improve access to markets
In Tanzania, some 85 percent of the country’s maize is produced by smallholder farmers. Low productivity, long distance from markets, a lack of credit, and inadequate storage limit smallholder farmers’ capacity to sell their produce.
For almost five years, P4P and its partners have developed the capacities of farmers’ organizations across El Salvador by helping participating smallholders understand staple grain markets, the importance of quality and commercialization, and how to manage a small business.
Thanks to funding from Howard G. Buffett Foundation – the main donor to P4P in El Salvador - more than 15,000 smallholder farmers have been trained in agricultural techniques, post-harvest management and grain processing since 2009.
Women’s low farming productivity in Mozambique is mainly due to their limited access to land and technical services in comparison to men. Unequal roles and unilateral decision making within households give women further disadvantages and less control of their livelihoods. As in other parts of Africa, women generally work for approximately 16 hours a day and spend a great portion of that on unpaid activities.
“It is very difficult to be a woman farmer. We go to the farm carrying the hoe, the tools and the children while our husbands don’t carry anything.
On a sandy plain below Mali’s majestic Bandiagara cliffs, Awa Tessougué describes how she and a group of women farmers are reshaping agriculture in their village, putting money in their pockets and improving their children’s nutrition in the process.
“In the beginning, my husband was sceptical about the project. Now, not only has he given me a larger plot of land so that I can grow more niébé (cowpea), but he also allows me to sell the family’s millet surplus to WFP,” she said.
WFP’s involvement with the Afghan milling sector dates back to 2005 when WFP first purchased flour from two millers as part of the food assistance provided to tuberculosis patients. Since then, the collaboration has expanded significantly and today, through P4P, it includes extensive support in advocacy to the local milling industry.
In the Kalenjin community in Rift Valley, women are usually entrusted with childcare and household chores, but this trust is rarely extended to other activities. Women have few assets of their own as they lack right of ownership. It is the men that manage household assets and all the finances; bank accounts and title deeds are in their names. Land rights are attributed to men.
Until recently, Elijah Lelei was no exception to this traditional allotment as he controlled farming activities on the land.