In October 2005, hurricane Stan caused a series of losses in rural areas, in particular damages caused to the agricultural production (maize, beans, fruits and others) added due to the eruption of the Ilamatepec volcano on the same date, caused by discharges of ash on the productive areas. These events resulted in a reduction on the availability of staple grain crops and animal husbandry, which constitute the base for food security and income of the affected communities.
To help rural families cope with this situation, the Minitry of Agriculture and Livestock, with the technical support of FAO and the support of AECID implemented a project between April 2007 and March 2012 aimed at reducing environmental economic and social vulnerabilities through the sustainable management of natural resources in order to support the communities to adapt to the impacts of climate change on rural livelihoods.
REHABILITATION OF PRODUCTIVE SYSTEMS
The activities aimed at the rehabilitation of productivity were introduced gradually and inclusive with the families. This process focused on five main areas: a) revival of traditional production systems, b) diversification, c) modernization and innovation; d) strengthening e) value chains, allowing an increase in profitability of farming activities.
In order to meet technical and logistical constraints to cover the needs of families in the project area, some innovations were introduced in the extension methodology, including the implementation of a "horizontal" approach that promotes the development of human and social capital to expand the coverage of technology transfer while ensuring ownership of processes and knowledge.
Community organizations are fundamental in the development of rural families. In this sense, the project focused on strengthening the capacities of families, in order to plan production for the market, and those of Communal Development Associations (ADESCO), receiving technical assistance to address issues directly related to food security.
REHABILITATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL SYSTEMS
The proper management of natural resources has enabled to link two actions that have traditionally been kept separate: production and conservation. This means that it has been possible to improve agricultural production and the provision of various services in environmental harmony, with a positive impact on reducing poverty and food insecurity.