Posted January 12, 2006:
In Senegal, The Rodale Institute® has provided support in many
areas of regenerative and organic agriculture and environmental
conservation since 1987, researching and developing systems for
farming practices and technologies. The Institute has also helped
to empower farming communities in Mali, Tanzania, and Kenya in Africa,
as well as programs in Asia and Latin America.
Africare is the US’s oldest and largest African-American
led humanitarian organization focusing exclusively on aid to Africa,
impacting communities in over 35 countries since 1970. Food security
and health are two of the organization’s pivotal focuses,
so this teaming agreement represents a commitment to improving the
quality of life for farmers and their communities.
Africare Senior Vice President Jeannine Scott remarks, “Africare
is very excited about this teaming agreement with The Rodale Institute.
Africare’s 35 years of experience in grass roots development
is well complimented by The Rodale Institute’s strengths in
regenerative agriculture. The majority of farmers Africare works
with do not have the resources necessary to benefit from conventional
agriculture; however, they are already practicing elements of regenerative
agriculture. Africare and The Rodale Institute are now joining forces
to positively impact thousands of farmers and their families.”
The Rodale Institute President, John Haberern, says, “Our
commitment to promoting regenerative and organic agriculture remains
firm. Indeed, the Institute’s efforts have generated significant
results such as increased yields by up to 300 percent for farmers
in Thies, Senegal. Both of our organizations have committed to identifying
joint programming opportunities that will bolster each agency’s
technical strengths to support small-scale agriculture throughout
For stories on the work of The Institute in Senegal, see the stories
in our series Sustainable
Through securing the necessary funding from a diverse cross section
of international donors, Africare and The Rodale Institute will
generate significant results, improving soil fertility, production,
water management and the quality of life for farmers and their communities.
Both organizations have partnered with USAID which provided programming
funding for their work helping farmers and their communities throughout
Africare’s work in agriculture
Africare has assisted the people of Africa in the areas of health,
HIV/AIDS, agriculture, water, the environment, poverty alleviation,
governance — and emergency aid to refugees and displaced persons,
victims of flooding and drought, and people impacted by health crises.
Its headquarters is in Washington, D.C.
Food security is a cornerstone of Africare’s work, which
currently takes place in 26 nations. In 2005, Africare implemented
development projects and food aid activities in 13 countries benefiting
more than 1.5 million people.
The globally recognized development group has been aiding farmers
in Zambia, Mozambique and Zimbabwe to develop small-scale, on-farm
oilseed processing utilizing local sunflowers. Africare trained
the farmers in business development and operating the presses, along
with providing them with improved varieties bred to withstand drought
and yield more oil. The effort has provided food, badly needed income
and livestock feed from a sustainable system.
Over the course of a decade, Zambians in six provinces bought more
than 2,000 hand-operated presses for making cooking oil and more
than 150 tons of sunflower planting seed. These businesses provided
owners with net incomes of more than twice the annual average.
Africare’s other agricultural-related activities include
training farmers in maximizing food production, offering of micro-credit
to female entrepreneurs, cooperative marketing development, training
caretakers in child nutrition, working with communities in the construction
of rural roads, and organizing communal-based digging of wells that
provide potable water and sources of irrigation for local inhabitants.