Partnerships to overcome hunger and poverty: PAA Africa in Malawi

Partnerships to overcome hunger and poverty: PAA Africa in Malawi

28/06/2013

In Mvera, Dowa district in Malawi, the farmers of Kaso Producers & Marketing Cooperative Society know very well what FAO and WFP collaboration means, as it has changed their lives. WFP’s Purchase for Progress initiative had enrolled the small farmer organization in 2010 and built the organizations’ capacity to sell to the market.

Kaso was therefore making profits out of agricultural produce – something that most of its members had never managed to do before the first sales to WFP – and gaining enough confidence and learning good business practices to deal with other buyers. However, the amounts the organization could sell were limited by the fact that they were storing them in an old container just outside the village.

FAO supported the organization by including them in the Grain Bank project, which meant the construction of a warehouse and training for warehouse management; this led to the cooperative almost doubling their collective sales in the following season, and increasing their profit compared to previous years. They also know that not only their community is food secure through the grain bank, but also that the food they sold to WFP was distributed to food insecure Malawians in other areas of the country.

WFP and FAO in Malawi also work together building vulnerable communities’ resilience to climatic shocks. Both organizations co-chair the Food Security Cluster, led by the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security (MoAFS), to enhance contingency planning and disaster preparedness. When responding to humanitarian needs after shocks, WFP ensures that communities have immediate access to food, while FAO supports them to restore their agriculture productive capacities. “Because both WFP and FAO are key partners of the GoM in case of emergencies, the collaboration between both organizations is instrumental in saving lives of the vulnerable!” states Samson Kankhande, National Project Officer with FAO.