Women groups/clubs in Nampongo Community mainly grew only rape on their land as this was the most profitable crop the could harvest which could enable them to make some money for their livelihood and to be able to purchase chemical fertilizers and pesticides. However, what they did not know was that the growing of a single crop was harming the soil and depleting it of nutrients and useful bacteria and fungi. Over time, this makes the land less productive, meaning less yields for the cooperative.
Upon introduction of the Community Participatory Project for Climate Smart and Resilience through Economic Empowerment (CPPCSREE) funded by the Joint Country Programme (Danish Church Aid/Norwegian Church Aid) under the Norwegian Church Aid Climate Smart Economic Empowerment (NCA CSEE) strategy, the community members were quite excited to see what the program was all about and learn better farming practices.
“Growing only one crop was quite challenging and involving. There were times when the crops were attacked by pests and diseases that we were unable to treat. There were times when this particular crop (rape) was not in demand and we ended up making a loss because we had no other crops that were in demand,” narrated Regina, one of the members of the women’s club (also an RN volunteer). She added that when they would use chemical fertilizers, the soil would become like a cement block and water couldn’t properly be absorbed, hence expenses kept piling up.
However, thanks to the intervention of the CSEE Project, they know how to better regulate the amount of fertilizer to be applied in the soil and how to practice crop rotation.
“Before the start of the Project, we could only grow a single crop. After just a few trainings, we were able to begin cultivating tomato, cabbage, onion, and cucumbers,” narrated Mrs. Siankondo, another women’s club member. As a result of this, their revenue will also be able to increase due to the variety of crops they are now able to grow. We look forward to more improvements to livelihoods under this exciting project.