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Improving agricultural production and food security in Ghana

Since 2010, Groundswell International and the Center for Indigenous Knowledge and Organizational Development (CIKOD) have worked together to spread agro-ecological farming to improve food security among the rural population of the Lawra District in the Upper West region of Ghana.  To achieve this, during the past year Groundswell and CIKOD have focused on improving cooperation […]

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Scaling agroecology to improve food security in Burkina Faso and Ghana

Women farmers in Burkina Faso learning new agricultural techniques

The semi-arid Sahelian zone of West Africa is one of the poorest regions in the world. The majority of people there lives in rural areas and survives as small-scale farmers in an extremely harsh climate. In recent years the region’s rapidly growing population, declining soil fertility, increased climate variability, a lack of income diversification, and […]

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Groundswell partnership wins $200,000 grant to scale farmer-led agroecology in West Africa

Last week the International Fund to Amplify Agro-Ecological Solutions, an initiative of the New Venture Fund, made a two-year, $200,000 grant to Groundswell International to work with partners in Burkina Faso, northern Ghana, and Mali to strengthen and amplify existing farmer and women-led initiatives and organizations in order to spread agro-ecological farming systems, reinforce movements […]

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Strengthening resilience to the food crisis in Africa’s Sahel

“The development model in the Sahel, particularly around agriculture, is not addressing the food, nutrition or environmental needs of most of the population, and there is a need for a paradigm shift,” said Peter Gubbels in a recent interview.  Gubbels is Groundswell International’s Regional Facilitator for West Africa.  From July 8-18 he shared these perspectives […]

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Progress report on agroecology, saving and credit program in Ghana

In July 2011, The Centre for Indigenous Knowledge and Organizational Development (CIKOD) joined Groundswell International’s global partnership, and in September CIKOD and Groundswell launched a program to promote agro-ecology, women’s savings and credit and related activities in the Upper West Region of Ghana. Among the first activities was an exchange visit organized between women leaders […]

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Sahel food crisis reaches tipping point, demands different response

Drought stricken landscape

Without a massive coordinated response from the international community, the rapidly growing food and nutrition crisis in the Sahelian countries of West Africa is likely to turn into a full blown famine. In recent weeks Oxfam, Tear Fund, and other international organizations have issued communiqués estimating that 12 million people face food insecurity, including six […]

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Addressing the silent structural food crisis in the Sahel

Young woman in rural Burkina Faso.

In the Sahelian countries of West Africa, thinking about “food crisis” is framed by the concept of a ‘relief to rehabilitation to development’ continuum. This concept places ‘crisis’ at one end, and ‘normality’ at the other. Although it is changing, this paradigm still dominates the actions of many actors in the Sahel. ‘Crisis’ is still […]

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Buffer food stocks to strengthen food security in West Africa

Traditional sorghum granary in eastern Burkina Faso

Images of famine in Somalia have drawn the world’s attention to the wider issue of food security in Africa. Unfortunately, the concept of “crisis” is still strongly associated with short, acute disasters such as drought and conflict. The unpalatable reality is that a largely silent, on-going, structural food crisis exists in many parts of Africa. […]

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Escaping the Hunger Cycle: Pathways to Resilience in the Sahel

Lacine's son in gliricidia tree nursery in Mali.

In the Sahel, the number of people suffering from chronic food insecurity, high levels of poverty and vulnerability due to drought is increasing. Food crises in the Sahelian region of West Africa can no longer be treated as limited events, caused by occasional hazards like a drought. Food and nutrition insecurity have become long-term, chronic […]

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