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FAO Regional Office for Africa

Malawi and the UN launch resilience project

Resilient communities: A foundation for sustainable food security and development

Family farming in Malawi


Lilongwe, 17 November, 2014: The Government of Malawi in collaboration with the United Nations and other partners, including Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), has launched a two-year project aimed at building the resilience of vulnerable communities to recurrent climatic shocks and enhancing their productivity to achieve food and nutrition security. Financial support from the Africa Solidarity Trust Fund (ASTF) amounting to US$2 million is enabling the project’s implementation. 

The project, “Building the capacity of vulnerable households to meet their basic needs and withstand shocks in Phalombe” will be implemented in Traditional Authorities of Chiwalo and Jenala in Phalombe.

It seeks to improve coordination and strengthen linkages among the social cash transfer, public work, food/cash emergency response and fertilizer and input subsidy programs to ensure maximum impact of existing resources.

These efforts will support and align with the Social Protection Support System Strengthening initiative led by the Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, in addition to promoting strong coordination of various stakeholders' activities through sharing lessons of best practices, and through joint planning, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation. 

Emphasis will also be on capacity development of relevant sections at the District Council involved in nutrition, agriculture and food security; environment and climate change management; gender, children, and social welfare issues; development planning, as well as disaster management.

The UN will work as one in Phalombe, with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) as the lead implementing agency in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), World Food Programme (WFP), and NGOs already operating in the project’s impact area, including Catholic Development Commission (CADECOM), Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) Malawi, Save the Children, World Vision International, Concern Universal, Evangelical Lutheran Development Services, Dignitas, and Mulanje Mountain Conservation Trust.

This collaborative initiative focuses on Phalombe because it is highly vulnerable to climatic shocks and the UN agencies involved already have resilience-related interventions in the district on which to build and achieve greater impact. The UN has been working to support resilience in Malawi for the last decade, and this project is an example of how the government and the UN will continue to support resilience-building efforts throughout the country.

The project aims to achieve the following objectives:

  • Increase the resilience of vulnerable households to climatic and economic shocks through participatory processes, capacity building and the creation of productive community assets.
  • Support and implement social protection programmes in coordination with humanitarian emergency assistance.
  • Strengthen government capacity to coordinate around disaster risk management
  • Create and strengthen the capacity of agricultural and other sectors’ extension workers, local authorities, lead farmers, and input providers in the area of resilience and risk reduction.
  • Implement community-based nutrition education and communication programmes.


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 Mike Chipalasa

Communications Officer

FAO Malawi

Email: Mike.Chipalasa@fao.org  

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