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Bite-sized stories: determination and decisions in Gujarat and Lesotho

A set of stories that illustrate some of the challenges that rural women farmers face every day, the determined and dynamic ways in which they decide to deal with them, and the ways in which their ingenuity and perseverance lead to greater food security, economic empowerment and long-term benefits for themselves and for their families.

© FAO Lesotho / Elisabeth Tsehlo

In Barefoot technicians: the water-women of rural Gujarat, we look at a group of rural women farmers who decided to solve their recurring problem of access to water, once and for all. Today, as trained technicians who manage, repair and maintain water pumps in three districts, these women have improved access to safe drinking water for themselves, their families, and their communities, while also creating jobs and extra income for themselves along the way.

Also in Gujarat, we meet Hansaben – the rural woman farmer in A tale of three decisions, and learn of a series of courageous and smart choices she made in her life: to ensure her daughter's education, to feed and support her family, and finally, to win back the family's farmland.

Lastly, in Conservation agriculture in Lesotho: when mother knows best, we stop in Lesotho to meet 'Me Maphoka, another rural woman farmer who, after years of difficult harvests on her land, knew it was time to make a change in her approach to farming. She decided to learn about Conservation Agriculture, and despite a rather dubious son, she did. A year later, we see the results of her hard work and determination.

Click here to read the stories.