FAO in Pakistan

Rebuilding Lives, Grain by Grain

Thousands of poor farmers have begun cultivating their land again with assistance from the FAO Support for the Recovery of Agriculture Based Livelihoods of Vulnerable Farmers Affected by 2012 Floods of Sindh and Balochistan Provinces in Pakistan Project

“When the flood waters subsided and we returned home, we found our house damaged and crops destroyed,” says 38-eight year old Fatima.

Fatima, her husband Anayatallah and their five small children live in the village of Mohammad Soomro in Jacobabad District of Sindh. Like many other areas of lower Sindh, their village suffered extensive damages during the floods of 2012. Crops drowned, cattle and poultry perished, and many of the already poor communities were left struggling to feed themselves and their children.

To help the village, FAO’s DFID-funded Support for the recovery of agriculture based livelihoods of vulnerable farmers affected by 2012 floods of Sindh and Balochistan Provinces in Pakistan Project brought a variety of assistance to the community. Fatima’s family received wheat seed and fertilizer for one acre plot of land. Anayatallah also received training on modern wheat husbandry techniques to ensure that the provided seeds bring good yields.

“We usually borrowed money to sow the crops; but because of the floods, we were not able to return the previous loan, and nobody was willing to give us a new loan,” explains Fatima. “FAO assistance enabled us to grow enough wheat to return our debts, put food on the table and set some seed aside for next year.” The family also used the money from wheat sales to pay school fees for the two of their school-age children.

 “We harvested 1.6 tons of wheat from the FAO seed,” adds her husband Ayatallah. “Without this support, we’d be struggling for years to recover from the floods.”