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Regional cassava initiative in support of vulnerable smallholders in Central and Eastern Africa

Regional cassava initiative in support of vulnerable smallholders in Central and Eastern Africa

Full title of the project:

Regional cassava initiative in support of vulnerable smallholders in Central and Eastern Africa

Target areas:

Burundi, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.

Recipient:
Contribution:
USD 6 798 329
EUR 4 700 000
Implementation:
21/10/2009-19/10/2013
Project code:
OSRO/RAF/912/EC
Objective:

To restore cassava yields by reinforcing the capacity of the most food insecure subsistence farmers to prevent, mitigate, prepare for and respond to cassava-related diseases in the region.

Key partners:

Association for Strengthening Agricultural Research in Eastern and Central Africa; Ministries of Agriculture (MoAs); Great Lakes Cassava Initiative.

Beneficiaries reached:

A total of 176 700 households (883 500 individuals) directly benefitted from the clean planting material provided in the project countries (the target of 500 000 beneficiaries was surpassed by 77 percent).

Activities implemented:
  • Provided improved cassava varieties to vulnerable subsistence farmers in the project countries.
  • Trained 2 716 farmer focal points and 443 MoA staff in cassava disease and pest identification.
  • Established 443 farmer field schools (FFSs) in the project countries (as compared with the target of 350). FFSs trained farmers in seed multiplication and building capacities to manage cassava production.
  • Created income-generating opportunities for farmers through the sale of excess cassava production.
  • Held annual regional stakeholder events to share project progress, lessons learned and future planning priorities.
  • Established national cassava coordination committees to regulate the movement of cassava vegetative material.
Impact:
  • Significant increases in cassava yields and productivity were reported by partners in project countries and observed during field visits by FAO monitoring and evaluation teams.
  • Improved farmers’ capacities to prevent, detect and remedy Cassava Mosaic Disease and Cassava Brown Streak Disease.
  • Reduced the use and movement of diseased planting material through the multiplication and distribution of disease-resistant varieties of cassava.