ESAFF: Marching on to Promised Land for smallholder farmers
*New strategic plan for 2015/8 in the pipeline
The Eastern and Southern Africa small scale Farmers’ Forum – ESAFF is fully committed in ensuring that the capacity of smallholder farmer is lifted so as to clearly influence policies for sustainable agriculture and poverty reduction in Eastern and Southern Africa, the body’s Chairperson Mr. Moses Shaha has reinstated.
Describing year 2013 as crucial as the body continued to implement Strategic Plan 2011 – 2014 titled “Enhancing capacity of small scale farmers to influence policies for sustainable agriculture and poverty reduction in Eastern and Southern Africa,” he assured that the plan’s focus on five broad issues were relevant and would be pushed on.
He noted that ESAFF at different levels has been actualizing the five issues namely, creating a mass movement for sustainable agriculture; participation in policy processes; governance and accountability; campaign, advocacy and lobby; and farmer organisations institutional strengthening.
He noted that, ESAFF was working with national members and like minded networks by supporting farmers to engage with key people and institutions in the ESA region.
In the plan that closes in 2014, ESAFF had identified four key result areas to deliver its mission - food security and sovereignty, trade and markets, cross cutting issues-gender, youth and HIV/ AIDS; and lastly institutional and organizational strengthening of ESAFF and its members.
According to Mr. Moses since 2002 when ESAFF came to be, the body has continuously been advocating for policy, practice and attitude change that reflects the needs, aspirations, and development of small-scale farmers in east and southern Africa.
We will continue with the struggle to enlighten the smallholder farmers who are the majority populace in Africa so that they can take charge of their lives and archive economic liberation. “We cannot give up,” he said. In 2013 some of the activities carried out included building capacity of selected small scale farmer on agro ecology farming practices.
At the end of the current strategic plan there will be an evaluation, and also preparation of a new one, that will take the body to new heights. To-date ESAFF operates in 13 countries namely in the eastern and southern Africa region.
ESAFF annual report for 2013 is available on http://www.esaff.org.
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