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Enhancing the role of conservation agriculture in disaster risk reduction in Southern Africa

Enhancing the role of conservation agriculture in disaster risk reduction in Southern Africa

Full title of the project:

Enhancing the role of conservation agriculture in disaster risk reduction in Southern Africa

Target areas:

Southern Africa (with a focus on Madagascar, Zambia and Zimbabwe)

USD 500 000
Project code:

To increase the awareness and application of conservation agriculture (CA) by disaster risk reduction (DRR) actors in order to scale up the approach among vulnerable households at risk of drought and other underlying vulnerabilities.

Key partners:

National Conservation Agriculture Taskforces (NCATFs), NGOs and the University of Zimbabwe.

Beneficiaries reached:

404 disaster risk reduction decision-makers, reaching an estimated 60 000 farming households.

Activities implemented:
  • 404 DRR decision-makers from 11 countries were exposed to the benefits of CA through regional and country-level meetings and field days.
  • Produced awareness-raising materials on CA, including two videos, a technical brief.
  • Information on CA-DRR was disseminated through key stakeholders, including African Conservation Tillage Network, Conservation Agriculture Regional Working Group (CARWG), NCATFs, the Regional Interagency Standing Committee and the Southern African Food Security and Nutrition Working Group.
  • With partners, set up demonstration plots on CA-DRR techniques in Madagascar and Zimbabwe to increase awareness of CA, providing seed and tools to support the process.
  • Supported the regional CARWG annual meeting in November 2016, which provided an opportunity for learning between regional and national level CA and DRR actors.
  • Organized a regional study visit for 33 CA-DRR actors to smallholder areas of Zambia, which was extensively covered by national media in the region.
  • Supported three DRR capacity assessments undertaken in collaboration with the Governments of Namibia and Zimbabwe.
  • Supported two regional DRR meetings with SADC and national governments to prepare for the El Niño drought.
  • Supported the training of 40 key stakeholders (UN agencies, FEWS NET, RIASCO, NGOs, etc.) on DRR awareness and capacity assessment.
  • Supported seed assessment case studies in Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe to ascertain the impact of the El Niño-induced drought on seed availability and circulated a lessons learned report to key stakeholders.
  • Created a positive perception among key DRR actors of the contribution of CA to DRR, which contributed to the scaling up of the technology in Southern Africa.
  • Using existing CA-DRR networks and building on previous USAID/OFDA and European Union-funded initiatives, the project documented and shared knowledge and best practices on CA to increase policy buy-in to upscale the approach.
  • Support provided to the Zambia CA platform in engaging with the European Union contributed to further investment by the European Union, including for CA.