In many parts of Africa parents have a daily struggle to put enough food on the table to stop their children from starving to death. There is nothing left for medicines or for the children’s school fees so talking to them about the need for a balanced diet is useless!
The deforestation that is continuing at an alarming rate because of the traditional farming methods is leaving more and more land desolate and uninhabitable increasing the size, frequency and intensity of humanitarian crises. But just imagine if there was a way we could feed the people and protect the environment whilst also providing education, medicines and buy other foods to supplement their diet!
Sounds like an unrealistic utopia, right? Well no, it is actually a reality! This apparent miracle, like the feeding of the 5,000, is a reality thanks to the brilliant agricultural program being headed up by Eliphaz Essah from Benin. Each year the train between 30 and 50 agricultural specialist to go out and teach their own people how to use new improved and to many “miraculous” agricultural techniques.
The first obstacle that the educators face is to convince the people of the need for a balanced diet, but when they explain that the new techniques can produce up to 5 times the harvest of their tradition methods it usually catches their attention. The next step is to help the locals realise that they can sell what they don’t need to buy other foods, medicines for their families and be able to afford to send their kids to school.
The next part of the process involves practical classes where the showy the local people how to put into practice the new agricultural methods they have learnt, rotating their crops, only using natural fertilizers and pesticides, and last but not least, setting up watering systems that don’t waste any of their most precious water resources.
The results are incredible and it’s a win-win situation for all involved including the farmers, their families, the village, and the environment. They produce more food, using less resources, and without harming the environment. But the best of all is that the new agriculture trainees become so excited they want to go out and teach everyone else around how to provide their families, with not only enough to eat, but also medicines and an education for their kids as well.