Communities in Salima say they have managed to achieve food security and their livelihoods have significantly improved, thanks to the El Nino emergency response by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).
FAO is supporting rural communities affected by the negative effects of El Nino weather phenomenon that caused floods in some parts of the country.
The Italian government is providing $1.1 million (K807 400 000) fundig to the project which aims at enhancing agricultural emergency response to tackle the negative effects of El Nino in districts that were hit by adverse effects of climate change.
The project is promoting winter and summer cropping among families that suffered the adverse effects of climate change in Balaka, Blantyre, Chikwawa, Kasungu, Phalombe, Mzimba, Mwanza, Neno, Nsanje, Salima and Zomba.
One of the beneficiaries in Kalonga Village in Traditional Authority (T/A) Ndindi in Salima, Felix Kachedwa, told the Italian Ambassador, Filippo Scammacca that winter-cropping has addressed food insecurity among families displaced by floods.
“Those of us who benefited from the first phase of the project harvested enough for our families. We are optimistic of eliminating hunger if this project will run for another two to three years,” said Kachedwa.
Scammacca said provision of basic tools and materials such as certified seed and chemical fertilisers remains key to building the capacity of and empowering victims of natural disasters.
He said his government was impressed with the tremendous improvement the project has brought among the vulnerable communities in Salima.
FAO representative Florence Rolle, however, declined to commit herself on the community request for extension of the project.
She said the desire of the development partners is to see beneficiaries becoming self-reliant. n