CHAMPIONING ALTERNATIVE FERTILISER IN ERADICATING POVERTY and FOOD INSECURITY WHILE IMPROVING LIVELIHOODS IN THE COMMUNITIES
Posted by Letswalo L Marobane on 16 February 2023, 12:20 SAST
Youth Action for Success and Development ,YASD has been conducting four research models to develop alternative fertilizers to drive a sustainable solution in eradicating poverty and food insecurity while improving livelihoods in the communities. Since 2019, YASD has been on the frontline promoting alternative solutions for organic farmers who constantly face rising input costs.
Since the independence of Malawi in 1964, researchers, agriculturists and academics have tried to invest their energy in compost farming and organic fertilizer usage, but the uptake and adoption has always been a challenge. YASD, as an innovative youth-led organisation came in to address the problem by bringing in new methodologies and techniques to make and using alternative fertilizers.
Despite the government’s effort in providing the Affordable Input Programme, the impact was niether measured nor quantified. This year, in the 2022-2023 farming season, the AIP encountered a lot of drawbacks, risking many poor families and local farmers of being food insecure. YASD optimized the time to educate communities to make alternative fertilizers. The fertilizer, not only helps the local farmer, but also restores the soil health and is environmental friendly as it balances the biodiversity within the farming system.
YASD has trained over 420 youth and women in groups in Dedza, Mchinji and Lilongwe in the agroecology and manufacturing of alternative fertilizers, using readily available materials like urine, maize husks, animal manure and ash.
We are happy to report as an organisation that the results from the harvest have been promising. The communities in these districts have adopted the use of our fertilizer. The Ministry of Agriculture is interested to engage us which means that we may be able to scale to communities in need.
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