Food Security & Agriculture
By many measures today, Africa is the hungriest continent in the world.
- Malnutrition affects a third of all people in Sub-Saharan Africa – more than in any other region in the world
- An estimated 310 million people live below the “extreme” poverty line of less than $1 a day.
- Strategies used to improve food production have been hampered by tremendous population growth, and in some areas, political instability
- Food production per capita has dropped over the past 30 years in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Africa’s future, it is generally accepted, lies in the hands of its farmers and rural entrepreneurs. Representing 80 percent of the population, they are a tremendous engine for economic growth. They could transform what is now the world’s most food deficit region into possibly the next breadbasket of the world.
Africare’s food security and agriculture programs focus on improving food availability, food access and food utilization, resulting in reduced risks and vulnerability. Over 40 years, our strategy has been to work in partnership with individual farmers, farmer’s associations, caretakers and women’s groups – who represent 75 percent of food production in Africa—with the principle objectives of linking food production and productivity to improved nutrition and income.
Today, to fully address a community’s needs, our programs encompass much more than just crops and livestock. Africare works with farmers and communities through a comprehensive approach ranging from crop diversification and improved techniques, farmer’s associations, development and micro-credit, to support in conflict resolution, civic education, gender equality and basic adults literacy. As a result, communities are able to create and implement their own Village Development Action Plans to better prepare for and anticipate shocks such as famine, floods and drought.
Africare’s programs in food security and agriculture measurably improve conditions across the continent, showing that rural poverty can be overcome, malnutrition can be reversed and farmers can feed their families with appropriate development support.