Improving food security and strengthening social cohesion in Bujumbura Rural Province
Title: Improving food security and strengthening social cohesion in Bujumbura Rural Province
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Lead executing agency: Ministère de la Solidarité Nationale, des Droits de la Personne Humaine et du Genre (MSNDPHG)
Overall term: 2012 to 2015
Bujumbura Rural Province in Burundi is still undergoing a process of reconstruction and democratisation. During the civil war it was used as a base by retreating rebel groups. The continuing political instability in the region is severely limiting people’s economic and social activities. Agriculture has been hit hard in recent years: arable land is affected by degradation, farmers lack materials and equipment, and local seeds are producing poor harvests. As a result, agricultural productivity is extremely low and food insecurity is chronic and structural. Young people in particular are becoming increasingly vocal about their dissatisfaction, adding to an already unstable security situation.
However, Bujumbura Rural has great economic potential with its favourable climatic conditions, numerous agro-ecological zones suited to diverse agricultural production, a young, active population, and proximity to markets in the country’s capital. These potentials need to be tapped to improve living conditions and lay the foundations for sustainable food security.
People receiving support in selected municipalities in Bujumbura Rural Province benefit from an improved framework for food security and enhanced community development.
The project focuses on tapping agricultural potential, generating local income and improving food consumption. It provides advice and training as well as financial and in-kind contributions to implementing agencies.
Wherever possible, individual activities are carried out by local actors and government agencies such as the state agricultural service (DPAE), national NGOs, youth organisations and women’s groups. Regional focuses are the municipalities of Mugongo-Manga, Isare and Mutambu.
The project has the following components:
- Supporting agricultural production: plant production, income from agricultural production and productive infrastructure
- Improving food consumption: nutritional advice in the municipalities
- Promoting integrated community development: cultural and sporting events
Results achieved so far
Some 5,000 farmers’ groups and households have received improved seeds, so that they can boost and diversify agricultural production.
Key municipal infrastructure is being built to improve production conditions. Terraces have been constructed to sustainably combat erosion and protect productive land.
Targeted communication measures carried out in the municipalities are leading to improvements in food consumption and healthier eating habits among local families.
Governmental, civil society and private sector actors have joined forces to carry out non-profit projects in the fields of sport, culture, infrastructure and environmental protection. These have helped strengthen social cohesion in the municipalities.
By supporting local actors, competencies and resources are developed in the long term and the management and organisational capacities of partners are strengthened.