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One small change can make a big impact

In Ethiopia’s SNNP region, water shortages and unreliable rainfall have become regular threats to farmers’ livelihoods. But a small-scale solution is having a life-changing impact for farmers like Adamo.

“My income and yields were very low. I wasn’t earning enough to feed my family so I migrated to other areas in search of work. I found a job but I still struggled to earn enough to provide for my family.”

Sadly Adamo’s situation is not uncommon. With no control over the weather, many farming families struggle when the dry seasons come. But Farm Africa’s Climate-Smart Agriculture project, funded by Irish Aid, has introduced a solution that is making a splash in communities like Adamo’s. Effective small-scale irrigation systems can give farmers like Adamo a year-round water supply, so they’re not reliant on rainfall alone to water their crops.

Adamo joined a Farm Africa training course on irrigation, vegetable production and soil and water conservation. Equipped with new skills and access to a water pump, he started producing cabbages, tomatoes, carrots, onions and even ginger!

From just one harvest Adamo earned £262 and he plans to build on this success by investing in improved seeds and fertilisers.

Adamo no longer has to leave his family in search of work or worry about feeding them. The money he earns from his vegetable production is enough to provide them with a balanced, diverse and nutritious diet. What’s more, he has hopes to expand his business.

“Since my income has increased I will invest in irrigation…I don’t have to leave my family any more in order to find a job.”

Thanks to small-scale irrigation systems, whole communities can now produce crops year-round. They might not have beaten the weather, but they’ve beaten the dry seasons.

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