Climate-Smart Agriculture – Smart for the Planet, Smart for Communities 

From improved seed varieties to introducing new crops, farming methods and storage facilities, Vita’s climate-smart agriculture programmes are harvesting more than mere kilos of nutritious fruit and vegetables.

They are cultivating stable livelihoods, community resilience and entrepreneurship amongst rural farmers, unemployed youths, and previously vulnerable women. Read how these farmers in Ethiopia and Eritrea are reaping the benefits from our innovative projects supported by expert partners and supporters.

A large focus of Vita’s seed work is enabling farmers to produce high quality seeds: potatoes, vegetables and cereals such as millet and wheat. Vita works with families to provide improved vegetable seeds and through training in vegetable production. Projects such as these give families a chance to boost their income, improve food security and diversify their nutrition. Vita is working with farmer groups to build their capacity for producing high quality cereal seeds for equitable distribution across the informal seed sector. Read about the impact this is having on individuals in the extraordinary stories below.

Making Mango Juice While the Sun Shines: How one Mango Farmer is Making his Dreams Come True

Ithe past, a large amount of my mango yield was spoiled by disease and had to be discarded,” Abraham said. If we picked three quintals from a tree, one quintal had to be thrown away. Abraham Admasu is one farmer who earns his living through mango fruit production in Arba Minch Zuria, Ethiopia. For years, he had been farming the local seed variety, and, like many of his peers, didn’t realise the transformative potential of using improved mango seedlings. Pests, diseases, outdated farming practices and poor harvesting techniques were some of the challenges Abraham was faced with, making it difficult to provide for his wife and two children.

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Her most precious pearls – Ascalu’s improved pearl millet seed becomes her most-prized possession 

Ascalu Kidane is a 45-year old mother of five children and the head of her household. She lives in Kermed, a small village in Anseba. Like other people in her village, Ascalu depends on agriculture for her livelihood, growing sorghum, pearl millet and maize on her half-hectare plot. To support farmers like Ascalu, who were struggling to produce enough crops to sell and feed their families, Vita began an improved pearl millet programme, in which small farmers could benefit from disease-free seed and climate-smart agriculture training. 

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Irrigating Hope for Farmers like Erasho in South Omo

Erasho Bokotow, a small farmer and the primary breadwinner for her seven children, stands amongst her crops in South Omo, Ethiopia. Erasho turned to farming to eke out a living when her livestock dwindled. Crops were to be Erasho and her family’s salvation. However, Erasho’s ability to earn a living from her farming was threatened by limited access to good quality seed, water and a resultant plague of pests and diseases.

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Vegetable Farming Projects Reap more than just Crops in East Africa

“I have a plan to work hard and change my life”. Kenni Aju lives in Npusumuriya in the Nyangatom woreda of South Omo, Ethiopia. A mother of five, at 36 years-old she was struggling to provide for her children – a common problem for many families in her community. Vita worked with Kenni’s community to introduce a vegetable farming project that would give families access to a sustainable livelihoods as well as a secure and nutritious food source.

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Abebech Alemu: Farmer, Mother, Entrepreneur

Abebech Alemu is the mother of two sons and one daughter. Thirty-six years old, Abebech and her family live in the kebele (village) of Chano Dorga in the Arba Minch Zuriya district of Ethiopia’s SNNPR. Abebech is a born entrepreneur and farmer however, her ability to create a stable and secure livelihood to support her family was severely impacted by climate change and the poor crop seeds she planted on her farm. In 2014, she joined Vita’s Climate-Smart Agriculture programme that is supported by Action on Poverty and Irish Aid and her life and livelihood were irrevocably changed.

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Irrigation Brings Food Security to Small Farmers in South Omo

This is the story of Yikoley Derigche, a diligent farmer from the rural village of Alikatakach in South Omo, Ethiopia. Ato Yikoley is 37 years old and the sole breadwinner for his wife and seven children. He farms a small patch of land in the Dassenech woreda (district) of South Omo yet, despite being a model farmer, he struggled to make a living due to the damaging effects of drought.

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Orar Arongoro is Planting Strong Roots for a Better Future

In the Delegnmur village of the Dassenech woreda, Orar Arongoro is a 26-year-old mother of three. She and her young family lived off the income they could get from her husband’s small cattle herd. Orar was responsible for raising their children and minding the house.

Life was difficult. Money was scarce and Orar often couldn’t afford to buy food. She knew that they needed to try and find a new way to earn a living but had no knowledge, experience or support to make this happen. Until Vita asked to come and work in her community and suddenly, there was a glimmer of hope.

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Amaroko Nekotelo’s Life Changed through Vita’s Vegetable and Irrigation Project

“I want to teach my children the vegetable farming skills I learned in this programme so that they too can live a better life.” Amaroko Nekotelo lives in the Npusumuriya village in the Nyangatom woreda of SNNPR, Ethiopia. Amaroko used to rear goats for a living however this was not sustainable for her. She had wanted to expand into vegetable farming to ensure she could support her family but due to a lack of knowledge, rainfall caused by climate change, irrigation, and finance needed to buy the agricultural equipment, this was impossible.

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