Achieving food security through sustainable farming
In April 2020, Sabab Lou began training 1,000 families who farmed land in the Chereponi district in northeast Ghana in the practice of sustainable cultivation of grains, such as soy, corn, and millet. In addition to training the farmers in sustainable practices, a special emphasis lies on implementing methods to improve the soil quality. The timeline for this project is set at five years and aims to increase the harvest yield and income for participating families by adopting modern and sustainable farming methods.
With the Chereponi Farming Project (CFP), the Foundation builds on its many years of experience with the Anoshe Women Group, through which the members of the group have managed to continuously increase their yield of the soybeans over the last seven years. The newly established Farming Development Organization (FDO), which runs the project, emerged from the Anoshe Women Group. The FDO started training 40 families from the village of Nansoni in April 2020. Over the next several years, the project will expand to include up to 1,000 families from several villages in the Chereponi district, encompassing a total area of approximately 1,000 hectares of farm land.
This project has a special focus on improving soil quality. Due to harsh weather condition and compounded by minimal crop rotation, the soil has been greatly reduced in quality of the last several decades. Through gentle tillage, an intensified schedule of crop rotation, “green” fertilizers, undersowing, and sustainable harvesting methods, Sabab Lou wants to revive the soil and maintain farming as a reliable source of income for the community and its future generations. The use of chemical fertilizers will gradually be replaced by organic fertilizing methods, and individual steps will be mechanized to save time and increase productivity. The applied, practical changes in the fieldwork will be underscored by training workshops in the theoretical underpinnings of climate-neutral agriculture.
As with all projects, Sabab Lou follows a strictly entrepreneurial approach. That is, the income that is generated by increased vegetable sales will not only serve as income for local families but will be paid to the FDO for its support and also set aside to finance future investment and improvements. By announcing the timed exit of Sabab Lou and the corresponding independence of the local community, the Foundation sets an important cornerstone for the long-term success of the project, giving the participating families their due ownership and agency from the start.