By Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa/Umoja Standard.
YUMBE: Communities in Yumbe are registering success in reducing malnutrition levels, attaining food security and improving household income as a result of communal farming.
This has been possible by putting into use the land they acquired from landlords with support from the 5year Right to Grow Project in the area, implemented by action Against hunger (ACF), Uganda Mission in the area with funding from the Dutch government’s Foreign Ministry.
Framers in Roronga Village in Chunia are seen inspecting their cassava plantation. Photo by Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa.
Four farmer groups we visited in Kululu and Odravu have ventured into growing cassava, maize, beans and soya beans donated by the project with the its goal of addressing malnutrition among children under five, ensuring food security and household income.
The project is being implemented in two sub counties of Odravu and Kululu where malnutrition and stunting cases were highly registered in Yumbe district according to the recent reports by Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS).
With support and mobilization of the project, farmers have since grown nutritious food crops and other food stuffs which has evidently reduced malnutrition and stunting.
Robert Anguliga, the chairman of Palawu farmers group in Odravu Sub County says, the support through Action Against Hunger will help them to alleviate hunger in their community.
He added, with 20 acres, the group is expecting to earn minimum of 20 million shillings from the cassava harvests alone.
Noor Drasi landlord from Arindwe villages in Odravo Sub County speaks to media during a visit. Photo by Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa.
Meanwhile, Jamal Wajarasu and Noor Drasi landlords in Chunia and Arindwe villages in Kululu and Odravo Sub Counties respectively admitted that they gave land for this project with the aim of fighting hunger in Yumbe communities.
“I donated my 10 acres of land for farming because I don’t want hunger in Chunia” (Jamal Wajarasu, landlord from Kululu Sub County).
The two landlords donated about 30 acres of and revealed their willingness to contribute more to sustain food production in the area.
Mariam Akiror doubles as the Program Manager of Right To Grow project and Advocacy and Strategic Partnership Coordinator at Action Against Hunger speaks to community members in Chinia village in Kululu Sub County. Photo by Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa.
Mariam Akiror doubles as the Program Manager of Right To Grow project and Advocacy and Strategic Partnership Coordinator at Action Against Hunger highlighted. She says, major focus of the project is the advocacy campaign on mobilizing farmer groups with the help district and lower local governments.
“Under the Right to Grow Project in Action Against Hunger, we are running an advocacy campaign on communal production, consumption and marketing of nutritious food crops for improved health, nutrition, resilience and self reliance.”. Said Mariam.
“We are promoting nutrient dense food crops, orange fresh sweet potatoes, iron rich beans, soya, vitamin A orange maize and other nutritious staple crops like groundnuts.” She added.
She informed that this is done jointly with district local government, sub county political and technical teams to mobilize, monitor and supervise farmer groups.
Mariam Akiror doubles as the Program Manager of Right To Grow project and Advocacy and Strategic Partnership Coordinator at Action Against Hunger. Photo by Julius Mugaga Tukacungurwa.
Leaders of Odravu and Kululu sub counties lauded the 4 farmer groups upon embracing the communal farming initiative and sought the Dutch Government to renew the project period after its expiry in 2025.
Office of both Sub Counties’ Agricultural Extension Services have directly involved in providing technical assistance to the farmer groups that has spurred sustainable production.
However, the crop production is being faced with challenges of climate change resulting into unreliable rainfall pattern, pests and diseases and for this therefore farmer’s groups demand for solutions.
Right to Grow is a five-year project that started in 2021, it in 10 refugee hosting districts in Uganda benefiting both populations.
Action Against Hunger implements the Project in three districts of Yumbe, Adjumani and Kikuube in sub counties of (Kululu and Odravu), (Dzaipi and Ukusijioni) then (Kyangwali and Kiziranfumbi) respectively.