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PROSPER: Building Agricultural Resilience in Malawi

 

June 15, 2020 • 3 min read

GOAL is part of a consortium of NGOs, UN agencies and private sector development experts implementing the PROSPER programme, designed to build the resilience of vulnerable farmers in Malawi.

Mother of four, Edna Gawani, is one of approximately 6,000 small farmers in Southern Malawi who are looking forward to a bountiful harvest this August, thanks to support from GOAL through the PROSPER (Promoting Sustainable Partnerships for Empowered Resilience) programme.

PROSPER is supporting the Government of Malawi in building the resilience of 1.1 million vulnerable people across four districts in Chikwawa District. The project also focuses on reducing poverty and ending the recurrent cycle of crisis.

GOAL is part of a consortium of NGOs, UN agencies and private sector development experts implementing this £60 million project which is funded by DFID/UKAID.

PROSPER uses an integrated and multi-layered approach to meet the immediate needs of vulnerable households, and to support longer term sustainable community development. It is designed to strengthen the capacity of communities to anticipate, absorb and adapt to shocks so they can better cope and ‘bounce back’ from crisis.

According to Edna, the PROSPER programme has taught her to take a new approach to planting which will benefit her family.

“GOAL, through the PROSPER Programme, taught me to prioritize high quality and certified seed as a way of maximizing yields with the same piece of land. This is instead of using our traditional methods of recycling poor quality seed,” said Edna.

GOAL acts as the NGO implementing partner of the project in the Chikwawa district where the winter (dry) season crop is particularly important for vulnerable farmers who have access to irrigation or sufficient residual moisture.

As the implementing partner for PROSPER in Chikwawa, GOAL is supporting 30,000 farmers in total. As well as crops, it is also helping farmers buy livestock.

How PROSPER changed my life

Father-of-six Misasi Mphepo always depended on tillage farming to make a living, never dreaming that he would have enough money to invest in livestock.

However, life for the 44-year-old farmer from Nyangu village in Makhuwira, Chikwawa District in Southern Malawi, took a turn for the better when GOAL introduced the PROSPER programme to his area in 2019.

Mr. and Mrs Musasi Mphepo standing beside their flock of goats, provided by the PROSPER programme. Photo by; Lucius Suwedi

Misasi was identified through a community animal health worker (CAHW) as a beneficiary for the livestock pass-on program under PROSPER. He qualified following a wealth ranking exercise which was done in his village.

Misasi Mphepo was trained in basic livestock management and given four female goats on condition that he pass-on four females goats to another beneficiary. He received the goats in early December 2019 and the goats have so far produced two female and three male kid goats. Furthermore, Misasi received high quality, certified seeds through special fairs organised under PROSPER. This means he can look forward to a good harvest this August.

“I never expected to have goats in my family, as anything I made from farm produce sales was spent on food for the family. I am very optimistic that soon I shall yield fruits from these goats. I sincerely thank GOAL through PROSPER for the support and I promise to do the pass-on once the young ones are ready,” said Misasi Mphepo.

With support from DFID, GOAL with other partners are implementing a four year PROSPER project in Chikwawa which will end in March 2023.