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 Food Security and Agricultural Development Program

Although agriculture is the main sector of the economy of the region, it is characterized by high level of subsistence production, dominated by small peasant holders, longstanding population settlement, low improvement in traditional farming practices, high farmland fragmentation resulting in declining agricultural productivity, dependency on rainfall, employment of primitive technology, and persistent drought and other natural calamities. The combined effect of these has been decline in agricultural productivity, and vicious circle of poverty.

Despite steady growth in agricultural observed in recent years, food insecurity is still pervasive and continues to be the major cause of poverty in the Amhara region.

Accomplishments registered in the areas of horticulture development, crop production and protection, livestock development, promotion of off farm income generating activities and cooperative development are the showcases of the fruition of the Food Security and Agricultural Development Program.

Apart from this, the followings are major activities of the Food Security and Agricultural Development Program accomplished for the period January to December 2012:

Crop production & protection

    • 2,331 m3 of compost prepared and applied on 71 hectares of land;
    • 17 quintals of improved seeds of Maize, Mung Bean and Teff distributed;
    • Demonstration on high value oil crop known as Cammilina Sativa on 19 plots (500 m2) conducted;

Horticulture development (Fruits and Vegetables)

    • Two lowland fruit nurseries and four apple nurseries managed;
    • 60 hectares of scion farms with 59,583 apple scion mother trees managed and 26,664 apple seedlings grafted; 27,000 lowland fruit rootstock seedlings raised in ORDA’s nurseries; and 7900 seedlings of sweet orange grafted in Jarie nursery;
    • 14,889 grafted apple seedlings distributed to 683 beneficiates; 7500 grafted seedlings of mango and sweet orange for 516 households (124 women); 24,889 of papaya seedlings were distributed for 2692 beneficiaries;

Livestock development

    • About 474 small ruminants distributed to 79 beneficiaries;
    • About 890 pregnant and lactating mothers trained on poultry production; 1,447 three month old chickens provided for 267 women;
    • 49 closure area users associations supported and groups organized under the Participatory Forest Management/PFM/ Approach engaged in group apiary; bee colonies provided for 752 landless youth (166 females) and PFM cooperative.
    • Construction of two honey collection hubs to be transferred for honey producer and marketing cooperatives completed and the other one is under construction;
    • About 1042 farmers (208 females) trained in bee keeping and marketing of honey;
    • 25.1 quintals of forage seeds distributed and planted on degraded land; 1,452,924 forage seedlings raised and planted;
    • 856 farmers on animal husbandry & forage development trained;
    • one forage multiplication nursery site managed;

Income generation and marketing

    • 7 value chain studies conducted (fattening of livestock, onion, haricot bean, honey, potato and malt barley);
    • Over 3 million Birr as grant fund transferred for ACSI to loan to GRAD’s beneficiaries;
    • About 1400 saving and loan groups organized with 24,525 members; trainings provided for 15,051 (6,819 women) members of the newly organized groups;
    • Previous VLSGs organized in 10 saving and credit cooperatives
    • 5 water user associations, and one apple producer and marketing cooperative with 137 members supported and organized;
    • 1445 households (49 females) trained on income generation;

Disaster & risk mitigation

    • Disaster and risk reduction training provided for 683 (116 female) community representatives;
    • Capacity of local partners enhanced to manage disaster; 946 Community Food Security Task Forces and 665 Kebele Food Security Task Force members, and  69 Woreda Food Security Task Force members trained;

Maternal & child nutrition improved

    • 313 care groups of pregnant and lactating mothers organized;
    • Orientation on essential nutrition action provided to 2,905 volunteer community health workers (VCHW);
    • Essential Nutrition Action messages(ENA) conveyed to 91,379 beneficiaries through educational entertainment;
    • Trainings on food preparation, preservation and proper utilization provided to 18,531 target pregnant and lactating mothers;
    • 21,593 posters on vital nutrition and health action distributed to lactating and pregnant mothers;
    • About 14,215 Mother to Mother peer groups discussions conducted;
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