The women of Lambussie Karni in Ghana are now able to reduce their expenditure on external agricultural inputs through capacity building on organic fertilizers and pesticide.
Understanding the underlying reasons for behaviors is at the heart of what Pathways does; change isn’t possible until we understand why things are the way they are. Working in the Lambussie Karni District in Ghana, Care Ghana’s MACF team realized that women were dealing with agricultural pests and attempting to raise their crop yields. As a result, these women were spending a large proportion of their income on purchasing external fertilizers and pesticides, which have negative effects on health, soil fertility, environment, and resilience. With this realization, efforts were made to build capacities to internalize fertilizer and pesticide production so that it was controlled by the women themselves.
Fifteen communities were trained on various techniques for producing these inputs with superior long-term benefit to the communities and their sustainability. During community durbars—public meetings held by traditional leaders– a number of training sessions and demonstrations were conducted that included the following: using post harvest residue and cow manure to create compost; preparing plant juice extracts and compost tea for quick fertilization of farms plants and gardens; and developing pesticides using Neem leaves, Neem seeds, chili, and onions.
Today over 800 women have control over soil fertility and pest management. Problems of whiteflies, flea beetles, and caterpillars causing damage are now issues of the past. These women will also multiply this skill through training their relatives far and near.
Indeed an internalized process that sources all its ingredients from local community is the true image of how adaptation strategies should go!
Contributor: Martin Yelibora