We are introducing a new partner and project in this newsletter, Masaka and District Landcare Chapter (MADLACC). MADLACC have been working on the “Promotion of agro forestry for poverty reduction and improved livelihoods” project involving over 500 farming households in the community.
The main aims of the project are to:
- Increase farmer income resulting from agroforestry practices
- Increase productivity of the farmer’s land.
- Enable communities to produce and plant their own trees
They are now half way through their one year project and they have recently reported on their progress, which despite the challenges of a delayed rainy season has been progressing well.Training has been done on environmental issues, the importance of agroforestry and soil and water conservation which has reached a wide sector of the community including farmers, community leaders and school children.Three community tree nurseries have been set up which were initially supported by MADLACC with advice, training and the supply of seeds but for the past five months the community has taken over the running of them. Albizia Chinensis, Calliandra and Sesbania Sesban were ready to plant out at the end of September; avocados and mangoes are also ready for grafting and the first seedlings of the mvule will be ready for transplant by mid October 2014.An important part in the success of this project has been involving the community from the beginning in designing the project and also engaging with community leaders to seek their support in encouraging the local farmers to embrace agroforestry.
They also adapted very well to the drought situation with the community putting a lot of effort into watering the nursery seedlings. During the holidays, at one school nursery, they coped by creating a water reservoir and providing extra shade.
We look forward to catching up with the project in another 6 months.