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Articles on this Page
- 12/16/15--01:00: _The Sting ̶ starr...
- 12/17/15--04:45: _Land Certificates: ...
- 12/22/15--07:44: _Investing in nutrit...
- 12/22/15--08:24: _Unravelling indicators
- 12/22/15--08:38: _Farmers, government...
- 01/06/16--00:52: _Diálogo de política...
- 01/11/16--03:11: _WMO Co-Hosts COP21 ...
- 01/12/16--07:57: _30 años de compromi...
- 01/14/16--05:14: _A glance at your fa...
- 01/15/16--06:42: _Guest Blog: Who is ...
- 01/21/16--05:50: _Article 0
- 02/08/16--01:02: _Philippines Annual ...
- 02/11/16--04:33: _Transforming rural ...
- 02/11/16--23:57: _Top five reasons wh...
- 02/16/16--10:33: _The Road to COP22: ...
- 02/18/16--08:28: _IFAD Governing Coun...
- 02/19/16--06:55: _Innovative investme...
- 02/19/16--08:27: _IFAD Governing Coun...
- 02/19/16--08:58: _Best quotes from th...
- 02/24/16--07:25: _Increasing yields o...
- 12/16/15--01:00: The Sting ̶ starring Anagyrus Lopezi and featuring IFAD
- 12/22/15--07:44: Investing in nutrition for a better future
- 12/22/15--08:24: Unravelling indicators
- 01/06/16--00:52: Diálogo de políticas para una nueva agenda de transformación rural
- 01/11/16--03:11: WMO Co-Hosts COP21 Science Side Event
- 01/12/16--07:57: 30 años de compromiso con El Salvador
- · Mejorar el acceso de las y los pequeños agricultores a tecnologías, recursos e información; que les permitan desarrollar una agricultura más sostenible y adaptarse al cambio climático.
- · Promover el empoderamiento económico de la juventud, las mujeres rurales y los pueblos indígenas.
- · Contribuir a los esfuerzos del gobierno para invertir de forma más eficaz, eficiente y equitativa en las áreas rurales.
- participación democrática,
- oportunidades económicas de los y las jóvenes;
- empoderamiento económico de las mujeres;
- programas de transferencia monetaria; acceso a mercados;
- alianzas entre los sectores público y privado y las y los pequeños productores rurales;
- medio ambiente y cambio climático;
- soberanía y seguridad alimentaria;
- y la participación y empoderamiento económico de los pueblos indígenas.
- Con la Asociación Guatemalteca de Exportadores (AGEXPORT), para promover oportunidades de acceso a mercados para las y los pequeños productores de Guatemala, Honduras y El Salvador;
- Con el Programa de las Naciones Unidas para el Desarrollo (PNUD), la ONG Visión Mundial y el Instituto Nacional de la Juventud (INJUVE) para apoyar a la juventud rural.
- Con la ONG PRISMA y el Comité Nacional de Agricultura Familiar (CNAF) para fortalecer la soberanía y seguridad alimentaria.
- 01/14/16--05:14: A glance at your favourite social media content
- 01/15/16--06:42: Guest Blog: Who is responsible for climate change?
- 01/21/16--05:50: Article 0
- 02/08/16--01:02: Philippines Annual country program review : an enriching ACPoR
- 02/11/16--23:57: Top five reasons why we love small farmers
- 02/16/16--10:33: The Road to COP22: How do we build on the momentum started in Paris?
- 02/18/16--08:28: IFAD Governing Council: Day 1
- 02/19/16--06:55: Innovative investments for rural transformation
- 02/19/16--08:27: IFAD Governing Council: Day 2
- 02/19/16--08:58: Best quotes from the 2016 IFAD Governing Council
- 02/24/16--07:25: Increasing yields on existing agricultural land is the future
|Mealybug infestation on a cassava leaf/Neil Palmer - CIAT|
|Tenagne Kebede receiving the IFAD Gender Award for East and Southern Africa |
from IFAD’s Associate Vice-President Périn Saint Ange ©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano
Similarly many development actors now recognize the importance of land tenure security, not only as an end itself but also as a means to strengthen the benefits of other activities. When people have more secure tenure, they can commit to activities with a longer time frame. They are more likely to invest in their land, plant trees and use environmentally sustainable agricultural methods. Moreover tenure security reduces the risk of conflict and can contribute substantially to women's empowerment by acting as a source of collateral.
This strong nexus between tenure security and women's empowerment has once again been highlighted during the 2015 IFAD Gender Awards. The award for East and Southern Africa was given to the Community-based Integrated Natural Resource Management Project in Ethiopia (CBINReMP). The project is supporting the issuing of land certificates, which have been given to all women heads of households in the target area. In married households, family land is being registered and certificates are being issued with husband and wife as co-owners. The project is directly benefiting 450,000 households.
Empowered women taking on new rolesWhat this means for the well-being of women and households was vividly explained by Tenagne Kebede, the CBINReMP focal point at the Bureau of Environmental Protection, Land Administration and Use in Ethiopia. Tenagne, who accepted the award on behalf of the CBINReMP, transmitted her enthusiasm for the project during the award ceremony on 25 November and the Special Gender Breakfast the following day. She explained how the project has made a huge difference to many women's lives.
Women are now happy to invest in their land and are for example planting perennials and trees and use soil and water conservation methods to increase the productivity of the plots, which enabled them to increase their income. This allows them to buy more food and to raise poultry and cattle – things which have helped them to increase and diversify their family's diet, leading to higher food security.
Being respected and having a voice in the community is often linked to owning assets. As women now are landholders, they are joining elders’ and land administration committees or are functioning as arbitrators in land disputes. Needless to say that all of these positive changes have increased women's self-confidence, empowered them on many levels and enables them to serve their communities.
Awareness raising as a key for successWhen Tenagne is asked about the "how" regarding the great success of CBINReMP, her answer is many times "awareness raising". The project has sensitized communities with regard to women's rights and land, which is the fundamental element for economic empowerment. It has raised awareness about land laws (land proclamation, regulation and procedures), land transaction (including inheritance, donation or gift and rent), and long-term land investments as mentioned above. Activities targeted men and women, both together and separately, in a range of institutions, especially at the grassroots' level, the elders' and land administration committees, and groups of women.
The CBINReMP has demonstrated the close link between women's empowerment and land tenure security. The communities in the project area, Tenagne, her colleagues, the Bureau of Environmental Protection, Land Administration and Use and IFAD can be justly proud of their great achievements.
Read more: Factsheet on Strengthening women’s access to land in Ethiopia
By Juliane Friedrich and Marian Odenigbo
In the past years, the topic of nutrition faced numerous challenges, amongst which was the lack of political will to invest in this area. This year thanks to the Global Goals and the adoption of different nutrition-related declarations such as Scaling Up Nutrition Global Gathering (SUNGG), Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2) and Committee on World Food Security (CFS), nutrition not only back on the agenda but also considered as a driver of the sustainable development goals. Furthermore, increasingly the development community is paying attention to the nexus between gender and nutrition.
Scaling Up Nutrition, or SUN, is a unique Movement founded on the principle that all people have a right to food and good nutrition. It unites governments, civil society, the United Nations, donors, businesses and researchers in a collective effort to improve nutrition.
Under the SUN movement 55 countries and the State of Maharashtra have committed to scaling up nutrition and working collectively as a movement to reduce the percentage of stunting. The SUN countries are home to 85 million stunted children. And this translates into 80% of the stunted children worldwide.
The fact that IFAD is investing in all the SUN countries, puts us in a vantage position to dialogue with governments and partners thus ensuring that nutrition is integrated and mainstreamed in development investments. Furthermore, considering one of the many focuses of IFAD-funded investments is addressing the needs of women farmers, we not only will be able to tackle the challenge of malnutrition at household level, but more importantly put a gender lens on nutrition and development related activities.
The onus to implement the nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive strategies and address malnutrition is on governments, as action happens on the ground and by people and not at global gatherings.
At the plenary session of the SUN Global Gathering in Milan which took place in October 2015, the participants reviewed the recent Global Nutrition Report on investment in nutrition. It was interesting to note that for every dollar invested in nutrition the return is $16. This means the benefit to scale up nutrition interventions in 40 low and middle-income countries is 16:1. Key note speakers and panelist stressed the importance of addressing teenage pregnancies because these pregnancies carry an extreme risk of underweight babies and thereby perpetuating malnutrition in the lifecycle.
Power of good data
In light of the increased political will on nutrition, at this year's SUN Global Gathering, participants from different governments including the parliamentarians put a lot of emphasis on availing of quality and convincing data for advocacy purposes. ‘Without data we are stuck’ said a parliamentarian from Uganda. Similarly another parliamentarian from Malawi said "If you give me good data I can make sure my country has a better nutrition programme."
Participants from the academic institutions underscored the important links between the work of policy-makers and nutrition scientists. They voiced their willingness to contribute to research and data generation for communication and advocacy purposes.
You will undoubtedly agree that over the last years we've made a lot of progress on the food security front. At the same time, we know that we need to do more and better on collecting, compiling and collating evidence base data to show the outcome of nutrition related interventions.
At IFAD we believe that focusing more nutrition-related aspects will increase the impact of investments and underscore IFAD’s commitment to achieving the goal of improving nutrition and reducing poverty. It will also position IFAD as a leader in the arena of food, agriculture, and nutrition and promoting the sectors contribute to improving nutrition.
IFAD’s focus on nutrition is not just an add-on but as an essential part of what IFAD already does and as a contributor to investment quality. IFAD’s emphasis on nutrition and nutrition-sensitive agriculture reflects an understanding of the importance of nutrition in development and the role of food and agriculture to improve nutrition.
We must not fail! We have committed to Nutrition! By joining forces we shall make zero stunting a reality!
From 14 to 18 December 2015 WCA organised a sharing and learning workshop in Abuja, Nigeria, for IFAD-supported projects from Anglophone countries in the region. The overall objective of the workshop was to strengthen the capacity of our stakeholders, mainly project M&E officers and coordinators, but also IFAD country teams, in the area of M&E, its basic concepts and methodological tools including RIMS, in order to improve the performance of projects and contribute to the achievement of its expected results and impact on rural poverty reduction. The event was part of the division’s continued efforts to strengthen the capacity of project management teams and aims at building technical and analytical skills in monitoring and evaluating the outputs, outcomes and impact of projects financed by the Fund. Sixty-three people participated, coming from Ghana, Liberia, Malawi, Nigeria, The Gambia, Sierra Leone, Uganda and IFAD headquarters.
Logframe & theory of change
During the second part of the workshop attention was given to tools that have proven to be effective for monitoring and evaluating projects. Good monitoring is important for projects to track progress made in achieving planned objectives and results and for decision-making. Two examples were shared: one on the use of GPS and SACCO registry in Uganda and another on the use of earth observation data in The Gambia. IFAD’s Asia and Pacific Division shared examples of their effort to shift the focus from impact documentation at completion to outcome measurement during project implementation. Annual outcome surveys are used to measure more regularly the positive or negative changes/outcomes taking place at the household level, provide early evidence of project success or failure and deliver timely performance information. Finally, Ghana’s experience with impact assessments was presented, where the use of sensemaking and the Participatory Impact Assessment and Learning Approach were piloted.
M&E system and RIMS
A group discussion was held on M&E systems and two projects presented their M&E system. While in The Gambia, the project M&E system directly feeds into the National Agricultural Database, in Ghana GIS is being used to monitor the different rural enterprises that are being supported by the project. Projects from Malawi and Sierra Leone presented their computerised systems for managing M&E data. RIMS was identified by many projects as being a challenge. It was emphasized that the priority of projects is the M&E system of which RIMS is a only a part that will automatically follow. Special attention should be given to identify evidence for outcome and to undertake quality control. Good experiences with RIMS reporting from Nigeria and Sierra Leone were presented.
The Annual Workplan and Budget (AWPB) is an essential managerial tool to: guide and regulate all activities and investments; set times, deadlines, targets and responsible parties; allocate appropriate resources to achieve proposed objectives and outcomes. Good practice AWPBs contain: an introduction; a summary Project description; a previous AWPBs implementation assessment; strategic direction, activities by component & resources plan; a summary training & technical assistance schedule; a budget & financing plan; a procurement plan; and, a M&E plan. Projects took the opportunity to develop their 2016 AWPB.
Participants also talked about the roles and responsibilities of the M&E officer. They should manage the “M&E process”, which includes many tasks and many people, advice and train the people involved; ensure data quality control and its utilization. Active management support is essential for good M&E. Management includes Project Coordinators/Managers, but also Managers in implementing institutions, and in IFAD. They should show interest, demand information, provide feedback; Act on non-compliance and non-performance; and give physical progress information the same attention and follow-up as financial progress information. A M&E training plan should be created to systematically build capacity.
Use of M&E data
Finally, the use of M&E data by three key stakeholders, project coordinators, the government and IFAD was discussed. The focus on M&E to support internal learning and management does not mean ignoring wider upward and downward accountability. Projects have important responsibilities to primary stakeholders, government agencies, funding agencies and society at large to account for their expenditures, activities, outcomes and impacts. In turn, supervising and funding agencies must account to their governments and tax payers for the investments made.
Article originally posted here
Glayson Ferrari destacó el papel clave de la juventud en el desarrollo rural: “Sin una juventud empoderada, todo esfuerzo en favor de un desarrollo rural inclusivo será en vano. Los jóvenes son la respuesta a muchos de los desafíos que las áreas rurales afrontan. Son ellos quienes pueden incrementar el uso de tecnologías, desarrollar nuevos servicios y llevar adelante negocios rurales más competitivos”.
Achieving food security in a changing climateOne of the themes you have been engaged with the most is climate change and its impact on food security. Our Recipes for Change showed the effects of unpredictable and extreme weather conditions on rural people's traditional crops and dishes.
Partnering with rural communities in developing countries and local celebrity chefs, we brought you a taste of food traditions from around the world, and included the recipes for you to try at home.
Last year, climate change was high on the world's agenda. The world's leaders gathered together in Paris in November to reach a global agreement to protect the environment. At the UN's Climate Conference (COP21) IFAD focused on the role of rural people in mitigation and adaptation to climate change.
At the COP21, our followers participated actively in our campaign "Make the Change". Thanks to everyone who contributed and shared the petition on social media, we were many who said "Make the change: Invest in farmers in the developing world now!"
In this episode of #RecipesForChange, top Bolivian chef Marko Bonifaz discovers how climate change is threatening the...
Posted by International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) on Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Building a better world, it's about peopleIn September, the UN General Assembly approved 17 new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that commit the world to shape a better future for the next generations. A future free of poverty and hunger. As entrepreneurs and agents of change, rural people and smallholder farmers are critical to ending poverty, feeding the world and protecting the planet.
We gathered stories of rural people, who with the right investments are making a considerable difference for their families and communities, by doing their job as farmers, fishers or livestock breeders.
In the lead up to the 70th session of the UN General Assembly, we launched a campaign to tell the world's leaders that: Building a better future - it's about people. Over 500 followers signed up for our Thunderclap and the support enabled us to spread the stories of Wafaa, Benjamin, Ana Sofia and many others to more than half a million people.
"I hope my children reach a high level in their education and have a vital role in their community. Also I hope that they continue to keep and maintain this land." - Wafaa Abu Shanab, fruit farmer, Egypt You can find the link to her full story in our bio. #ItsAboutPeople #GlobalGoals #Action2015 #Egypt #Water #Agriculture
The United Nations observes designated days, weeks, years, and decades, and assigns each of them a specific topic that resonates with the priorities of the global agenda. As a specialised UN agency, IFAD has celebrated many of those observances, like International Women's Day, World Soil Day and World Environment Day.
The one our followers engaged with the most was the World Happiness Day, celebrated on 20 March. Also, during the World Food Week in October, our followers engaged with us at multiple events such as the UN Committee on World Food Security and the Expo2015 in Milan for the World Food Day, on 16 October.
It's World Happiness Day! #HappySoundsLike indigenous peoples' rights & knowledge respected http://t.co/8XG0U9j9y1pic.twitter.com/wT0otfONiX— IFAD (@IFADnews) March 20, 2015
#HappySoundsLike people equipped with options and a future http://t.co/8XG0U9j9y1#RuralTransformation#ag@UNpic.twitter.com/4aZnTlKaWF— IFAD (@IFADnews) March 19, 2015
To me #HappySoundsLike rural transformation: invest & happiness & well-being take root: http://t.co/u3fWYmz3av@UNpic.twitter.com/8k2j13CMDU— Kanayo Nwanze (@knwanze) March 19, 2015
Today is #WorldFoodDay! Follow us for the official celebrations at @Expo2015Milano: http://t.co/Ww3iirvc2R#WFD2015pic.twitter.com/oxZD0avBz2— IFAD (@IFADnews) October 16, 2015
Conditions that compel people to flee their homes are also conditions that trap people in poverty @knwanze#WFD2015pic.twitter.com/KrUOgv7Q3r— IFAD (@IFADnews) October 16, 2015
AgTalks: Bringing you the latest trends in small-scale farmingIntroduced during the International year of Family Farming, the AgTalks series has become a regular appointment, offering up-to-date insights and research on smallholder farming. Innovators, policy-makers and rural people have come to IFAD Headquarters in Rome to join a live discussion, and engage with the audience in the room as well as followers on social media. The topics have often been connected to the international agenda, like the one on the International Day of Rural Women.
The future belongs to organised farmers, says Beatrice Makwenda in her #AgTalks that was just released yesterday.Watch the full episode here: http://www.ifad.org/agtalks/index.htm
Posted by International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) on Thursday, June 18, 2015
The content reported above is just a small piece of the broader mosaic of topics, events, and research findings we have talked about on social media.
If you want to know more about what's going on in the environment of agricultural and rural development, read more stories of smallholder farmers, find out the latest thoughts and trends on rural transformation - then stay tuned and follow us in 2016!
We are on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Google Plus, Linkedin, and Blogspot. And don’t miss the thoughts and quotes from IFAD's President, Kanayo F. Knwanze, which he shares on his Twitter account.
By Julie Potyraj from George Washington University,
As extreme weather events occur more commonly across the globe, it is becoming apparent that the implications of climate change extend far past a change in the Earth’s average temperature. Though all countries will be affected, The World Bank cautions that poor countries are the most at risk for complications due to the changes in weather. Increasingly severe droughts, floods, and heat waves will hinder crop production and reduce the availability of safe water. Information collected by Global Agriculture shows that millions of people in the world’s poorest countries rely on either subsistence or commercial agriculture, so any changes in solar radiation, temperature, and hydrologic cycle could threaten their livelihoods. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change(IPCC) crop yields, food prices, and overall food security will be negatively affected by climate change as well, though the exact impact is difficult to calculate due to a variety of determinants that include regional climates, agricultural practices, and types of crops.
Certain parts of the world, specifically Africa and Asia, are already suffering from extreme weather events. There has been a push to emphasize funding for climate “adaptation” in addition to climate “mitigation.” Adaptation is the preparation for the effects of climate change, while mitigation involves initiatives that obstruct the progress of climate change. It is no longer enough to reduce greenhouse gas emissions for the future; damage has already been done. Many organizations, like The World Bank, are prioritizing disaster risk management and other immediate climate change adaptation strategies in order to brace for the effects of the Earth’s rising temperature in the world’s poorest countries; without adaptation, those countries are even more exposed and vulnerable.
Why? Because a slight change in the Earth’s temperature can result in immeasurable consequences on the daily lives of poor rural communities. Lower crop production, changing landscapes, and shrinking safe water supplies caused by the effects of climate change will hinder economic development and increase world hunger. Severe weather events facilitate the spread of disease. The damage that weather causes to infrastructure and rural environments makes it more difficult to provide people with the medical attention they need. If they are unable to cope with unstable soil conditions and unreliable water availability, rural families may be forced to temporarily or permanently resettle.However, migration can lead to political, social, and economic instability. Migration is an extreme and disruptive adaptation strategy, but it may be the only option for inhabitants of the most vulnerable regions.
Though agriculture is actually a contributing factor to greenhouse gas emissions, the people most susceptible to the harmful effects of climate change are not necessarily the people with the power to mitigate the Earth’s rising temperatures. The following data visualization from MHA@GW, the online Executive Master of Health Administration offered through the Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University, compares the nations that contribute the most CO2 emissions to the nations that are most vulnerable to the effects of climate change. Many of the most vulnerable nations are already predisposed to severe weather events such as drought and flooding. Unless developed countries take accountability for their contribution to climate change, the world’s most vulnerable countries and communities will increasingly struggle to adapt to its negative effects.
This graphic can be seen in a larger form here.
New Projects in the Philippines Introduced: FishCORAL and CONVERGE
Two new projects in the Philipines was introduced this week. The Fisheries Coastal Resources and Livelihood (FishCORAL) on 19 Januay 2016 and the Project Convergence on Value Chain Enhancement for Rural Growth and Empowerment (CONVERGE) on 21 January 2016.
FishCORAL aims to aid fishing households below the poverty line in the areas of Region 5, 8, 13 and ARMM
Project CONVERGE aims to reduce incidence of poverty in the ten target provinces of Regions 9, 10 and CARAGA located in the west, north and northeast of Mindanao which are among the six poorest regions of the country through crop diversification and increased farm income.
Each of the three IFAD-supported projects has worked out a knowledge management strategy. Areas for collaboration between the projects have been identified. In addition, IFAD’s country strategy results framework for Cameroon has been updated, which will support the use of performance information to improve decision-making. Finally, the event has helped to boost team spirit amongst the various stakeholders. All participants re-confirmed their commitment to a common agenda: transforming rural areas in Cameroon.
As different cultures celebrate Valentine's Day, IFAD reminds the world of the importance of investing in small farmers.
At IFAD, we love investing in small farmers. Some of our reasons may be obvious – small family farms feed up to 80 per cent of the population in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, manage a large share of the natural resources and ecosystems, and support the livelihoods of more than 2 billion people.
Other reasons might be surprising – for instance, did you know behind each box of chocolate is the important work done by a small farmer?
There are so many reasons we believe the world should also love and support small farmers, but here are our top five reasons.
1. Small farming provides rural youth with job opportunitiesIn the Near East and North Africa region, seventeen million young people – more than 20 per cent of the population – are without work. Since young people face the highest rates of poverty, they often move away from home to seek opportunity elsewhere. However, when young people work in agriculture, they not only can support themselves, but are more likely to adopt new technologies. This creates better yields, which in turn allows farmers to continue feeding the world's growing population. Rural youth are an important factor in eradicating food insecurity internationally.
IFAD supports the ambition young people have to not only find employment, but to act as entrepreneurs within the industry. The IFAD Rural Youth Economic Empowerment Programme (RYEEP) combines IFAD's knowledge of rural development with the expertise of two entrepreneurship-focused social enterprises to create employment opportunities for more than 18,000 rural youth between the ages 15 and 35.
2. Small farmers contribute to climate change mitigationClimate change is the biggest threat humanity faces today and small farmers are on the front lines to battle it. Rural farmers are guardians of natural resources, often managing vast areas of land and forest. Improving land management and farming practices and planting forests can help lower greenhouse gas emissions. Small farmers are combating the effects of climate change by implementing new farming techniques.
In pursuing its target to reduce 80 million tons of C02e by 2020, IFAD is supporting small farmers with adaptation projects that could reduce emission by 30 million tons. These initiatives includes planting trees and creating natural barriers against flooding and unpredictable rains, using crops that are adapted to resist climate change, and other solutions to address short-and-long-term problems.
3. Small farmers produce much of the world's cocoa (and chocolate)The world spends US$83 billion each year on chocolate. Europeans especially love chocolate, eating one kilogram of it every month. This industry depends on the five million small-scale family farmers who grow 90 per cent of the world's cocoa. IFAD is helping cocoa farmers in 12 countries to overcome problems such as pests, disease and unsustainable production methods that harm the harvest and local environment. In São Tomé, IFAD has formed a relationship with the local farmers to connect their high-quality cocoa with Fair Trade buyers such as Kaoka. These efforts have helped nearly 2,000 farming families in São Tomé to revitalize their cocoa industry and produce 1,200 tons of cocoa in 2014.
|Fatima, small farmer from São Tomé|
4. Small farmers contribute to global food securityThe population of the planet is expected to grow to almost 9.5 billion people by 2050. Food production will need to nearly double in developing countries to feed this population and address existing hunger and malnutrition. Since most of the world’s farms are small, investing in them will be the only way to address this growing demand.
In Cuba, an IFAD-funded project has organized 157 farming cooperatives to increase the production and productivity of crops such as maize and beans. The Cooperative Rural Development Project in the Oriental Region (PRODECOR) supports the country — which imports 80 per cent of its basic food requirements — to address food insecurity. The population has been impeded by intense drought due to climate change and limited agricultural machinery. With the use of new technologies and the pooling of knowledge, these cooperatives are expected to benefit over 52,000 people.
5. Small farmers preserve biodiversityBiodiversity is an essential part of preserving the planet. Changes to an environment such as the loss of a plant or species has the potential to derail the balance of the whole region. When family farmers take the necessary steps to secure their local environment, they not only ensure that their crops yield bountiful harvests, but that there will be future harvests too.
With the support of IFAD, small farmers in Brazil have implemented new agricultural practices that are more environmentally friendly. Over the course of nine years, the region saw a 69 per cent reduction in land erosion, and carbon sequestration ranging from 15 to 79 per cent. In the 20,000 hectares of saved and preserved land, there has been an increase in diverse species of 11 per cent.
Written by Christopher Neglia
Briefing by France,Morocco and Peru on the United Nations Climate Change Conference.
This afternoon’s event at IFAD, Outcomes of COP21 and the Road to COP22, was a forum where presenters and discussants reflected on the process leading up to Paris, and the priority areas for action now that a sustainable framework has been established.
Perin Saint-Ange, Associate Vice-President of IFAD, gave the opening remarks, which considered the role of agriculture in the Paris agreement.
Agriculture is not mentioned explicitly in the Paris agreement, he said, but the preamble emphasizes that actions to address climate change should be undertaken in a manner that is coherent with sustainable development and poverty eradication efforts.
In fact, agriculture features in 80 per cent of countries’ Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs), which is UN-speak for national climate plans.
This sends a positive signal that countries want to take action on adapting agriculture to the effects of climate change, and reducing emissions from unsustainable farming practices, but additional finance and support is needed to help countries implement their INDCs, especially the Least Developed Countries (LDCs).
Eda Adriana Rivas Franchini, Ambassador of Peru to the UN Rome-based agencies recalled the long journey of the UNFCCC process, which had its origins in the fated Kyoto Protocol, and finally culminated with the ambitious, universal and balanced Paris agreement.
Areas of dispute had to be overcome, compromises made, and longstanding divisions resolved within the principle of shared but differentiated responsibilities.
As host of COP20 in Lima, Peru’s contribution to the final outcome was substantial. At the time, I attended the opening address of Environment Minister Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, which set a political impetus for results at those negotiations.
In Peru the government worked behind the scenes as an impartial broker, and facilitated an environment that led to a number of successes that year, including the adoption of a mechanism to ratchet up country ambition every five years and a target to raise US $10 billion in climate finance by 2020.
Indeed, Peru is one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change, whose impacts are affecting the Amazon region and the country’s glaciers, which are a crucial supply of fresh water and hydro energy.
'Paris agreement is not a destination but a departure'Serge Tomasi, Ambassador of France to the UN Rome-based agencies emphasized the universal nature of the Paris agreement. Adopted by 187 countries, it has put the international community on a trajectory to achieve neutral emissions by the latter half of this century.
One of the critical factors that led to the success of COP21 was the high-level diplomacy brought to bear by influential figures like French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, who fostered the goodwill of countries and guided the Convention to adopt the final agreement.
In Tomasi’s words, the Paris agreement is not a destination but a departure. It does not impose emission reductions, nor does it contain sanction powers. Rather, the targets each country has voluntarily committed themselves to will be enforced through a stock-taking exercise every five years, compelling governments to act based on a system of peer review.
Lastly, Ambassador Hassan Abouyoub from future COP22 host country Morocco offered his assessment of the climate change agenda. In his remarks, Abouyoub said that Morocco was the first to anticipate climate change on the African continent.
Over the last century, Morocco has experienced huge changes in rainfall patterns, to the extent that droughts now occur one in every three years. Fisheries have been heavily impacted by the warming of ocean waters and agricultural land faces chronic water shortages.
Sensible policies, such as fish stock regulation and water management have been implemented by the government, but Morocco’s vulnerability to climate change is an alarming indication of more severe impacts to come.
As host to COP22 this year, Abouyoub promised the same spirit of solidarity among Parties to drive enhanced action even before the Paris agreement comes into effect in 2020.
Learn more about how IFAD is helping small farmers adapt to climate change.
Written by Sally Martinelli
|The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were a key focus at this year's Governing Council. ©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano|
Rural farmers and representatives from many nations came together to address the monumental task at hand: achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. The GC, which has taken place at IFAD headquarters for the last six years, assembled in a spacious tent.
|Delegates representing countries from all over the world were in attendance at this year's GC. ©IFAD/Flavio Ianniello|
|His Excellency Sergio Mattarella (second from left), the President of the Italian Republic, walks to the stage with IFAD's President, Kanayo Nwanze (right). ©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano|
He brought attention to the current refugee crises and called leaders of all nations to get involved, saying: "Saving human lives and reaching out to those fleeing war or misery is a moral duty, a duty for any society that defines itself as free, democratic and authentically respectful of human rights."
|Sergio Mattarella, the President of the Italian Republic speaks at the opening of IFAD Governing Council. ©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano|
He commented on the cross-cutting nature of these goals, saying "the issues are not separate chapters, they are many pages of the same book working towards inclusion" and that Italy will play a central role in achieving them for the well-being of future generations.
President Mattarella concluded by saying: "The hunger, poverty and the deprivations chain is strong but it can and it must be broken."
Nwanze followed His Excellency, and gave a statement to close the inaugural ceremony. The President of IFAD opened his address by warning the audience that, without the continued efforts of IFAD and other organizations, it is quite possible that the recent gains made in the fight to end poverty and hunger could be reversed.
The focus must remain on long-term development, specifically achieving the SDGs. According to Nwanze, this feat depends on smallholder farmers and their ability to transform rural areas into being more productive, and IFAD expedites this process by "investing in small farmers so that they can grow their businesses and improve their lives through their own efforts; not through hand outs."
|According to IFAD President Nwanze, IFAD has reached 139 million people and saved five million hectares of land through its initiatives between 2010 and 2015.©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano|
Nwanze also discussed changes made in the way IFAD conducts its business and how it assesses its own impact. He shared some promising statistics: IFAD has reached 139 million people and saved five million hectares of land through its projects that opened or closed between 2010 and 2015.
Nwanze concluded that "project participants are better off than they would have been in the absence of IFAD." Despite this good news, Nwanze cautioned that there is much more work to be done, citing the refugee crisis. To Nwanze, "it is imperative that we commit to investing in long-term development."
The next person to take the stage was international journalist Babita Sharma, the moderator for the panel on Implementing the Sustainable Development Goals: Galvanizing Private-Sector Action.
Sharma was joined by a diverse range of panelists, which included: Sunny Verghese, Olam International CEO; Jussara Dantas de Souza, the Commercial Manager of Family Agribusiness Cooperatives of Canudos, Uauá and Curaçá, and Brazil; Beatrice Nkatha, the Founder and Managing Director of Sorghum Pioneer Agencies in Kenya; and Victor Rosca, the Director of IFAD Consolidated Programme Implementation Unit in the Republic of Moldova.
|A private-sector panel which included Sunny Verghese, Cofounder and Group CEO of Olam International, highlighted the need for bold initiatives to better link smallholder farmers to markets.©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano|
She cited specifically how important farmers need the assistance of both to access international markets. Verghese echoed this sentiment, saying: "Everyone has to act … recognizing that there is no way to deal with these problems unless we all come together.”
Verghese also believed that the private sector will have to play an increased role as governments are becoming more burdened with other costs.
|When farmers are respected, they produce better and more consistently, says Sunny Verghese – Cofounder and Group CEO of Olam International. ©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano|
However, according to Rosca, once the banks saw that their investment paid off, "Their attitude changed. We were able to convince them that it is necessary to invest in agriculture, and they were quick to agree."
Dantas de Souza also spoke about the importance of perspective and motivation. She described the need for private institutions and groups to help educate and motivate small farmers, citing an example in Brazil of Canadian missionaries encouraging local women to take on a larger role within their society to improve their lives.
To Dantas de Souza, "when there is a will, there is a way," and this will must be sparked within rural farmers so they can help themselves. The panel offered fascinating perspectives on the SDGs, and reiterated how important it was that people from each corner of the world work towards these crucial goals.
Written by Christopher Neglia
|Innovation is needed more than ever to help make marginal environments agriculturally productive, says Dr. Ismahane Elouafi, ICBA.|
In the first segment of the session, Dr. Ismahane Elouafi, Director General of the International Center for Biosaline Agriculture, observed the huge impacts of the Green Revolution on Asia’s agricultural productivity in the 1960s.
This was a high-input agriculture that boosted key commodities such as rice, but also left behind marginal landscapes, upon which the majority of smallholder farmers work.
Today, owing to strong population growth and climate change, Dr. Elouafi suggested that we need to mobilize innovation on a similar scale as the Green Revolution, because the alternative: an additional 1.2 billion food insecure people by 2050, is not a choice at all.
Achieving SDG1 (no poverty) and SDG2 (zero hunger) will foremost require Africa to strengthen agricultural productivity and close its yield gap with the rest of the world. This necessarily calls for more public subsidies in the agricultural sector.
But Elouafi also brought up the need for greater investment in upstream research and development.
By testing crops within local agro ecosystems, smallholder farmers can optimize their production. This type of applied research generally comes with additional time and resource costs, but the commercial potential is huge.
|A second panel discussion, facilitated by IFAD Associate Vice President Périn Saint Ange, focused on innovative agricultural solutions to many of the global challenges discussed over the two days. ©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano|
Ssendiwala spoke on the utility of household methodologies as a means of improving intra-household gender relations.
According to Ssendiwala, encouraging women to take up more economic responsibilities in the community can appreciably contribute to development. She also rightly noted the importance of men becoming champions of gender equality.
Ronald Hartman underlined that middle-income countries such as Indonesia should ensure that economic growth is equitable.
As the fiscal position of countries strengthen, IFAD’s role becomes more about facilitating innovation through policy dialogue and piloting new technologies on small farms, thereby contributing to more inclusive growth.
Glayson Ferrari Dos Santos advocated for more democratic participation of young people in economic decision-making. He proposed moving from a project-based approach to an more integrated mode of engagement between political institutions and non-traditional actors in civil society and the private sector.
Finally, Jacopo Monzini provided a review of IFAD’s experiences using GIS and earth observation to get a clearer picture of land use and environmental degradation, scaled down to the project area.
Mapping the spatial data at project design, and going on to collect it during implementation has already led to better beneficiary targeting, and enhanced the capacity of ministries and universities to utilize such data in their own development strategies.
Written by Sally Martinelli
Rome, 18 February– After a whirlwind of dynamic speakers, panels and deliberations, IFAD's 39th Governing Council has officially come to a close.
During the last two days development leaders, heads of state and government representatives from all over the world discussed critical issues relating to feed security, nutrition and small farming that hamper growth and prosperity for everyone.
Entrepreneur Mo Ibrahim takes the stage
Dr. Mohamed Ibrahim, globally recognized entrepreneur and founder of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, was featured in the IFAD Lecture that opened the session.
Through its Index of African Governance, Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership, Ibrahim Leadership Fellowships and other initiatives, the foundation promotes and cultivates good governance.
A vibrant orator, Ibrahim did not mince words as he offered his analysis and opinions about the direction African countries need to take in the coming years.
He noted that the continent is full of potential, and that "its richest resource is its people."
However, according to Ibrahim, Africans themselves, and especially their leaders, need to take responsibility for the problems the continent faces and address them quickly. Africa faces poverty, hunger, food insecurity, and a growing population of young people that are leaving agriculture and rural areas behind.
Ibrahim urged African governments to increase their investments in agriculture, noting that easy profits from oil or minerals caused African leaders to neglect the agricultural sector. However, this is not a sustainable practice since "people don't eat oil, they eat food," Ibrahim said.
Ibrahim noted that 80 per cent of countries had not met targets made in the Maputo Declaration on Agriculture and Food Security of 2003, and that it was crucial that they live up to commitments to invest in agriculture.
Though Ibrahim said there was no "silver bullet" to solve these problems, he focused much of his speech on good governance.
Good governance is crucial for businesses and other organizations to invest in Africa, Ibrahim said. Businesses would not invest in an area that does not obey the rule of law. He listed a range of governance problems from corruption to poor taxation regimes.
Though he conceded that businesses can "misbehave" as well, Ibrahim said that when business is a force for good, it creates jobs, prosperity, and innovation, all of which would transform the African continent.
Building the agriculture of tomorrow
|Innovation is needed more than ever to help make marginal environments agriculturally productive, says Dr. Ismahane Elouafi, Director General of the International Centre for Biosaline Agriculture.©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano|
Ibrahim's speech was followed by a one-on-one session with Dr. Ismahane Elouafi, the Director General of the International Center for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA).
Elouafi started her speech with a warning: though climate change is now universally recognized, there will be grave consequences if we do not realize how widespread and damaging its impact is.
"We have huge challenges ahead, and we need to act, " said Elouafi.
Elouafi spoke about a broad number of topics, including gender equality and education. Elouafi was optimistic about the future, saying that she believes the SDGs are within reach.
"I am confident that we can achieve the SDGs because the demand is there," said Elouafi. But to get there, much has to be changed.
One of Elouafi's main critiques of how smallholder farming is approached concerned the flaw in research and development. Elouafi said that most research and development is carried out in the West and then applied elsewhere.
She believes that, to produce the best results, development programmes must be devised where the problem is happening. "We need to have much more customized research and solutions for each region," she noted.
Elouafi also spoke about how farmers are leaving agriculture because they are not being given the the opportunity to innovate or expand into new areas.
According to Elouafi, in order to reach "the agriculture of tomorrow," we must continue to innovate.
Innovation investments for rural transformation
|A second panel discussion, facilitated by IFAD Associate Vice President Périn Saint Ange, focused on innovative agricultural solutions to many global challenges.©IFAD/Giulio Napolitano|
This message was underscored by the next panel, on “Innovation Investments in Rural Development.”
Moderated by Périn Saint-Ange, Associate Vice-President of IFAD's Programme Management Department (PMD), the panel featured IFAD experts discussing innovative investments in four different regions.
Elizabeth Ssendiwala, the Regional Gender Coordinator for the East and Southern Africa Division, described how IFAD is addressing gender equality by looking at the household as a whole. In response to a question posed from the audience, Ssendiwala said: "Gender equality is not about empowering women alone, but rather every member of the household."
Glayson Ferrari Dos Santos, Country Director for El Salvador, Latin America and the Caribbean Division, spoke at length about the youth in Central America and the problems they face.
He believes that rural youth in El Salvador want to help transform the areas they call home, but are not often given the opportunity to do so.
"Young people have to be part of the solution, and not seen as part of the problem," Dos Santos said. Concerning agriculture, Dos Santos said he found that the youth were willing to work in the industry, but they wanted to break away from traditional farming practices.
Ronald Hartman, Country Director of Indonesia, Asia and the Pacific Division, agreed with this idea of doing things differently. He believed that, by incorporating new technologies, farming can be made more attractive, more efficient and less laborious.
Hartman also spoke about working in Indonesia, and how changes in IFAD's structure allowed the conversation to shift from being all about finances to finding out ways to innovate and support the nation’s development strategy.
Jacopo Monzini, the Senior Technical Specialist for the Environment and Climate Division, also discussed innovation, focusing on the ways IFAD is using GIS and earth observation to get a clearer picture of land use and environmental degradation, scaled down to the project area.
After the Chairman read a summary of the discussion in the Governor's Round Table the previous day, IFAD President Kanayo Nwanze delivered his closing statement.
Nwanze told the room that “by working together to deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – starting with zero poverty and zero hunger – we can break the chain of desperation” that leads to emergencies and humanitarian disaster.
Nwanze reminded us all that there was much more work to be done and that we must continue to work together towards long-term solutions.
Or, as Nwanze aptly put it: "Our world is one world."
As IFAD's 2016 Governing Council draws to a close, catch up on some of the best quotes.
Read more: Statement by Kanayo F. Nwanze, President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) to the Opening session of the Thirty-ninth Session of the Governing Council
Read more: Achieving new Global Goals will require increased investments in smallholder agriculture say development leaders at Rome conference
Read more: How galvanizing the private sector is key to achieving Agenda 2030
Read more: Mo Ibrahim on agriculture in Africa
Read more: Innovation, agriculture and a changing climate