2K families to benefit from climate project 

Source: 2K families to benefit from climate project – The Southern Eye

AT LEAST 2 000 families in rural parts of Zimbabwe including Manicaland are set to benefit from a climate change resilience project to be implemented by the government and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

In a statement, the UNDP said through financial support from the Green Climate Fund, the “Building Climate Resilience of Vulnerable Agricultural Livelihoods in Southern Zimbabwe” project aimed to modernise traditional farming methods while improving food security in the targeted region.

 

 

The UNDP said more than 2 180 households in rural Zimbabwe will be benefit from the project. UNDP resident representative, Ayodele Odusola, said one of the key components of the project was the installation of solar-powered pivot-system irrigation schemes in rural areas of Matabeleland South, Masvingo and Manicaland provinces.

He said this would help farmers to grow crops more effectively, using less water and labour while protecting them from persistent power shortages being experienced across the country.

“Rural provinces, including Matabeleland South, Masvingo and Manicaland province will receive 21 solar-powered pivot-system irrigation schemes — using less water to irrigate crops more effectively, while immune to power shortages and using less labour — to modernise upon traditional canal systems,” he said.

 

 

Odusola said the need for such projects was evident, especially in light of the recent adversely El Nino-induced drought that affected the 2023/24 farming season.

“Approximately 70% of Zimbabwe’s population relies on subsistence rain-fed agriculture for food and nutrition security, making them highly vulnerable to changing weather patterns,” he said.

UNDP said two schemes had already been completed, benefiting 320 households while eight more were in the process of being established.

 

“In 2023, over 3 000 farmers had received new irrigation infrastructure and climate-smart agriculture training. Nearly 44 000 hectares had been cultivated with climate-resilient agriculture, and almost 70 000 farmers were benefiting from various aspects of the project such as training, seed multiplication, and financial management,” the UN agency said.

 

 

Regis Chiwaya, the project’s UNDP irrigation expert, emphasised the long-lasting impact of the irrigation schemes.

“The beneficiary communities will be able to transform their farming into businesses, changing their lives forever,” he said.

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