Media consultant Paida Kadzakumanja recently visited two agricultural projects implemented by the Farmers Union of Malawi and funded by the Government of Flanders. After meeting with the beneficiaries, she wrote three articles about the projects.
The District Stakeholder Panels project (2013-2016) is a three-year project which aims to improve agricultural extension services in Malawi. Tamanya Haraw, the Director of Planning and Development at Mzimba District Council, recently praised the project for promoting and strengthening the participation of farmers in policy formulation and implementation at district level. Through the creation of District Stakeholder Panels, the project brings together government, agricultural organisations and the farmers themselves. One of the innovations, introduced by the Panels, are Agriculture Fairs that provide a link to markets for the farmers, as well as keeping them informed of new technologies and improved production methods and agricultural practices.
Another project is the Sustainable Trade Project (2012-2015) focusing on capacity building of female households by increasing their incomes through the production and sale of chickens. Vulnerable women in the Mzimba District are now earning stable incomes through this breeding project. A follow up project (2015-2020) on nutrition programmes using the chicken programme as a benchmark has been awarded MK2 billion.
This article discusses the agriculture fairs under the District Stakeholder Panels project.