Through its partnership with Lutheran World Relief, FRB supported a pilot project called Learning for Gender Integration. Read about the results in the article below.
Farmers in the Flor de Pancasán area of Nicaragua’s Matiguás municipality were struggling. They were seeing low crop yields for a variety of reasons, including soil depletion, a lack of resources to make key investments and weather fluctuations, and this was affecting their ability to feed their families. Through its Learning for Gender Integration project, Lutheran World Relief wanted to see whether an initiative to increase agricultural production and improve food security might be bolstered with efforts to reduce gender gaps.
A lovely little video from one of FRB's implementing partners, Lutheran World Relief. We currently partner with them on programs in Bolivia, India, Nicaragua, Peru and Uganda.
We share this to thank all people who are involved in helping people overcome challenges and grow lasting solutions to hunger!
Richard Aparco of Peru stood nervously before about 50 people at Assumption Parish in O'Fallon and discussed crop rotation and yields, organic fertilizer, greenhouses, irrigation and more.
An agronomist coordinator of a Foods Resource Bank program in Peru coordinated by Lutheran World Relief, Aparco added a bushel of thanks to supporters of the Christian response to world hunger.
Speaking with the help of translator Alex Morse of Kansas City, Kan., the first-time visitor to the United States
FRB’s Uganda-Busoga program is based on the premise that the food security of smallholder maize farmers increases when husbands and wives learn to work together toward the goal of increasing their maize production. Traditionally, women and men have farmed separately, with women’s efforts going toward caring for the whole family, and men raising money that sometimes went to the family but most often went to meet their individual needs. This program encourages both spouses to think about the family as a unit that needs to be cared for first.
The FRB/LWR Nicaragua-Pancasán pilot program seeks to reduce the gender gap evident in the practices of a local farmer cooperative by including as many women as possible in the co-op’s services. Gender inequality has a profound effect on food security. When women have less access to land and capital for farming activities, they are less involved in economically productive activities, and earn much less than men. When both women and men have access to resources they can grow more food and generate more income for their families.
In the high plains of the Andes Mountains, a dozen indigenous communities participating in FRB’s Bolivia-Potosí program are enjoying better health, eating nutritious, varied food and drinking clean water, thanks to their successes in vegetable production. Ninety percent of families have established vegetable gardens, and 70% of these families have boosted their incomes by 70%. Advertising that promoted the communities’ organic onions and lettuce in the nearest city led to an increase in sales.
The 12 communities have received training in appropriate farming, irrigation methods and marketing, and program follow-up in the areas of nutrition, hygiene, and preventive health.
In the Busoga region of Uganda, FRB and its member organization Lutheran World Relief (LWR) are partnering with NAMUBUKA Grains Area Cooperative Enterprise (ACE) to help increase the income of 1,500 smallholder farmers. FRB's Uganda-Busoga program is one of three pilot programs in LWR’s cross-regional, gender-integrated food security and agriculture initiative, the Learning for Gender Integration (LGI) initiative.
Mothers, babies and families participating in FRB’s Perú-Chota program are enjoying improved health through workshops and follow-up on hygiene, home vegetable gardening, nutrition, agriculture, and clean water practices. These rural communities are also securing greater access to basic municipal services , and the program has developed standards for inter-agency coordination between health and educational centers. Hygiene, nutrition and school gardens are a part of school curricula, and mothers and teachers alike have a positive attitude towards the program’s activities.
Over a three-year period, 450 boys and girls under the age of five in the communities have experienced a 9% reduction in chronic and an 11% reduction in overall malnutrition.
By engaging mothers in workshops on nutrition, hygiene and home gardening, the communities involved in FRB’s Peru-Chota program are seeing a reduction in child malnutrition. The 450 children are consuming 50% more calories per day over the last 3 years because their families have been able to diversify and improve the quantity and quality of the food they grow and eat. Also, since they are drinking clean water and washing their hands, children are less likely to be sickened by intestinal parasites. Their bodies can take better advantage of the nutrition now available to them.
In Part 1, I talked about how this International Women’s Day coincides with the start of LWR’s Learning for Gender Integration (LGI) initiative, where we hope to learn how to create equal opportunities for men and women to benefit from our work in communities around the world. In part 2 I’d like to talk a bit about why a gender-integrated approach is better and what we’ve learned so far.
Talking to Men & Women Farmers
In the design stage of our three model projects — located in India, Uganda and Nicaragua —