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Innovative project in Arba Minch financed by the Czech Development Cooperation

In 2016, the Czech Development Cooperation has launched the project „Implementation of Holistic Land Management and Climate Smart Agriculture in Arba Minch Zurya Woreda” in cooperation with local partners Meret and Zonal Agriculture Bureau in Arba Minch and with the help of Czech expertise from Mendel University. The project aims to establish permaculture-training center and living seed bank and introduce new varieties of super food into production and nutrition of local farmers. The representatives of the Czech Embassy and CzechAid has monitored the project in March 2018 to assess its progress. The visit concluded that activities are being held according to the project and visible changes in everyday life of concerned farmers are beginning to take place.

The hills around Arba Minch Zuria Woreda a Chencha Woreda are affected by deforestation and free grazing, which leads to soil erosion and incapacity of soil to retain rain water. Consequently, the rain removes the fertile soils and floods the agriculture land at the base of the hill. The zonal agriculture bureau in Arba Minch identified several watersheds, specifically Hare, Kurpayo and Baso rivers, as areas with insufficient management of natural resources. Mendel University in Brno (Czech Republic) together with Zonal agriculture bureau and MERET project jointly work on innovative plan of landscape management in the above-mentioned areas. The satellite images with explanatory notes from Geotest were translated into landscape plans and have been shared in 2017 with the agriculture bureau for future planning. The inhabitants and farmers of affected areas received series of trainings in soil and water conservation in order to learn and later adopt the required behavior and protect the landscape for the future.

As an example a 30 hectares of the watershed Kurpayo river (Kebele Chano Mile and Chano Dorga) was already rehabilitated with the supervision of trained local experts. The know-how of terracing agriculture was transferred from Konso. Other components of this project include establishment of a Permaculture training center with a living seed bank and various demonstration plots of nutrition-dense crops, vermi-composts, as well as moringa cultivation and processing. Within this project, we work with women cooperatives that process moringa leaves. During this year, the center will launch its training activities and have already a big interest from the side of the representatives of woredas, farmer from surrounding area and international partners.


Project in Arba Minch