The population of Mampatim lives essentially from rain-fed agriculture.
Due to climate change, with which the population and the regions are strongly confronted, agricultural production is significantly declining. Despite the diligent efforts of farmers in this sector, they often lack the necessary know-how. They are directly affected by food insecurity.
For this reason, in the project “Economic Empowerment for the Women in Casamance” in southern Senegal, women joined together and promoted agriculture with cereal and vegetable cultivation as well as small-scale trade.
The project benefited a total of 500 women, including 300 women engaged in agricultural production and 200 women engaged in vegetable production.
The goal of the project is to contribute to strengthening agricultural skills and improving the income of disadvantaged women. This includes awareness raising activities, technical training and economic education related to re-cultivation and protection from the effects of climate change.
Women are empowered through project activities such as:
Strengthening technical and agricultural skills,
Training in economic skills to promote small-scale trade,
Division into groups,
Distribution of quality seeds,
Introduction of new, climate-adapted seeds for rice, vegetables and niébé, and
Processing of agricultural products and by-products.
Further training in food preservation and awareness-creation of ownership and involvement of all stakeholders, as well as the planting of fruit trees in public places also expand and support the project.
A workshop on the preparation of enriched flour (rice, millet, corn, peanut and niébe) was organized in collaboration with the regional food security department.
After the harvest, the very dedicated women organized a granary so that supplies could be safely stored for the children and families during future periods of hunger.
According to the statistics of the “Service Départemental du Développement Rural,” the crop yields have increased e.g. for paddy rice from 800 kg/ha in 2021 to 4 tons/ha in 2022.
The success of agricultural production (rice ,sweet potatoes, niébé and vegetables) led to the elimination of food insecurity in the region, to the increase the income of women’s groups and served as an example on how to fight poverty for other villages.
The reforestation with 900 plants will also have a very positive impact on the environment and microclimate.
Ms. Haby Diallo, chairwoman of the Endam Group, said at a project summary workshop:
“With this project, we have managed to bridge the periods of hunger in our different households, and we are now able to spread agricultural production techniques further. I have been growing rice for 10 years and never had more than 1 ton of paddy per hectare – this year, on the other hand, I obtained 8.90 tons of paddy on 2 hectares and, thanks to the surplus, I sold 5.5 tons to traders for 1,100,000 FCFA (1,676.93 EUR).”
To ensure the sustainability of the project, in addition to strengthening agricultural production, the focus is on expanding partnership agreements to other markets and additional planting of 300 trees in public places in 2023.