My name is Innocent Brown, a man aged 32 years old and residing in Ntauchira Village in traditional authority Likoswe, Chiradzulu district. I joined the DAPP Young farmers club project in September of 2018 when DAPP held a meeting in our village to inform us about the project that they wanted to implement here in traditional authority Likoswe that will focus on equipping us with skills and knowledge on the importance of adapting climate smart agriculture, entrepreneurship and agribusiness skills so that we can become well informed famers who are prepared for anything at all times.
As a married man who has a family to care for, I thought it wise to join the project because I knew there was a lot I would learn and I have done just that, learnt. For example, I have learnt how to make manure which I can use in my farm to have higher chances of producing more. I have also learnt how to preserve and conserve water and constructing firewood saving stoves which protect the environment among others.
Now I am happy to say that this season I have planted maize, cassava, sweet potatoes and soya and I have applied all the techniques and knowledge that DAPP field officers taught me. With this knowledge I have, I believe I will harvest more than I ever have this year on the same half acre land I have planted on.
I am thankful to DAPP and this project because it has given me an opportunity to learn things I didn’t know before. Indeed education is a never ending process.
Salanao Sedrick, a 24 year old lady is one beneficiary of the young farmer’s club project being implemented by DAPP Malawi in partnership with the Norwegian Association of Disability (NAD) and The Technical, Entrepreneurial and Vocational Education and Training Authority (TEVETA)
A mother of a 7-year-old son, Salanao is partially deaf and has problems with speech. She lives with her aunt in Mchocholo village in Traditional Authority Likoswe in Machinga district.
“When she expressed interest to join the Young Farmers Club project that started in September, I was not for the idea because people usually leave out people with disability. I was concerned that she wouldn’t feel welcome” said her aunty Joyce Ntambo
But after she joined the project, Joyce noticed that Salanao was happy and started applying what she was learning in her own field at home.
“When she gets home, she asks me to join her in the field where she demonstrates what she has learnt. I am happy that she is learning something and that she has made new friends who come and pick her up when going to the demonstration plot where they are learn various skills from the DAPP farming instructors” exclaimed Joyce.
Joyce also says the farming instructors are warm and always include Salanao in all their activities. She is thankful to DAPP for the project and the opportunities it is giving to people with disabilities “because of the encouragement Salanao gets, she has planted maize this growing season and I know she will harvest and have some to eat and some to even sell and make some money”
The young famers club project plans on working with 285 young farmers annually over the project’s three year life span and is targeting 60 percent female farmers, 40 percent males and 10 percent farmers with physical disabilities in Traditional authority Likoswe.