Rural Community Development Conservation farming Conservation farming Supplying small scale farmers with the training they need to grow their way out of poverty and hunger. In Uganda 86% of the population rely on the land to feed their families, yet the majority are struggling to get by, no matter how hard they work. Despite Uganda’s good soil and favourable weather, the poor are getting poorer. This is partly due to war and HIV, which means farming knowledge hasn’t been passed down to the next generation. We have a solution: conservation farming is a tool which empowers the poor to help themselves. It is a highly efficient, environmentally-friendly, method of farming - in contrast to the traditional slash and burn approach. We are seeing farmers dramatically increase their crop yields, with every single farmer doubling their harvest. Thatched mud hut – all farmers we work alongside live in traditional housing. Energy efficient stove – families are trained in the construction of mud stoves which use 60% less wood than a traditional fire and reduces smoke inhalation for women who traditionally cook over three stone fires. Tippy tap – households are taught how to build these simple taps with materials available in the village to improve hygiene. Drying rack – families learn how to build drying racks to prevent the spread of disease. Pit latrine – many households don’t have a toilet, supported farming communities assist the neediest in the construction of latrines. Conservation farming – Amigos provides three years of training and support in the method of conservation farming (also known as Farming God’s Way). Gender, health and hygiene training – knowledge and awareness in these areas improves a community socially and physically. Secure grain storage – Purdue Improved Crop Storage (PICS) bags are a low-cost way of storing harvests and protecting them from infestations so farmers can wait for market prices to rise. Selling surplus produce – bicycles enable farmers to reach distant markets and secure better prices for their crops. Solar lamps – kerosene lamps often result in fires and burn down houses; they also produce toxic fumes. Solar lamps provided in communities are safe and efficient. Rosetta: aka Mrs Fix It! Often a community is full of ideas, resources and ambition – it just needs a hand-up. When the Chan Obalo Anyim farming group was formed in Gulu in 2016 the members lacked food and income. With some training in conservation farming, a lot of hard graft and stacks of vision they have begun to transform their community. Under the elected leadership of Rosetta Ataro this group have multiplied their crop yields and sown many other seeds… A nursey school: With the profits made from selling their surplus crops the group decided to build a nursery school to meet the need in the area. The profit from their shared garden pays for four teachers and one cook. A market: These smart thinkers invested in land which could be used as a market, and rent out pitches every month to traders. The money goes back into the group pot. A bank: The group now acts as a bank, using their savings to provide loans to the community. They make some profit on the interest, which is much lower than a traditional bank. An apiary: After recent training from Amigos the group are managing ten beehives and plan to re-invest in more hives once they reap a good harvest. A primary school: Building on the success of the nursery school, Rosetta and her team have constructed a primary school in the area to meet demand. A borehole: Recognising the immense commitment and ambition of Rosetta and her farming group, and thanks to one of our generous supporters, Amigos installed a borehole (pictured below) to provide local access to clean water, and support this inspiring community as they lift themselves out of poverty.