Emmanuel International (EI) has been working with the Tanzania Assemblies of God in the Mwanza Region by helping churches in community development to empower their communities in particular by helping in integrating conservation agriculture with other projects like beekeeping, livestock, entrepreneur, evangelism, environmental conservation and sports and games in schools.
This project is taking place in seven villages: Chabakima, Igumamoyo, Nyamililo, Misungwi, Bundilya, Itabagumba and Busenge in the Mwanza Region.
By integrating all these activities, it will enable farmers to transform their lives economically, socially and spiritually through proper utilization of the available resources.
- Biblical foundation of all activities of the project
- Education, seminar and trainings on each activity of the project
- Trainers to visit the villages regularly to see the progress of the project
- Preparing young generation to be aware of environmental changes, its effects and how to control it
- Sharing the project to the local churches and local government in the selected villages
- Tree planting programs
After years of conservation agriculture in the Mwanza Region, partner churches and EI found the need for establishing and integrating other activities as mentioned in introduction so as to bring positive impact to the community where other people who are not engaging in agriculture could now engage in other activities of the project. Due to environmental degradation in the Mwanza Region it was necessary to establish tree planting, giving education on environmental care and establishing nurseries. Poor farming practices in the Mwanza Region made the project to have more potential in the area. Lack of education in these villages on their activities like livestock keeping, entrepreneurship and evangelism etc. highlighted the need for establishing this project. There is less government participation in giving education and advising farmers on proper utilization of resources available, especially in villages. There is also less participation of youth in farming activities.
Progress of planned activities
- Seminars on conservation agriculture and livestock keeping has been completed in all seven villages.
- Trees have been planted in the villages of Itambagumba, Igumamoyou and Busenge and will be done in the villages of Bundilya and Chabakima. We are planting trees in the rainy season.
- Supervision on farm care and cattle is still ongoing, as is supervision during harvesting.
- Veterinarians have conducted seminars on how to take care of calves after birth.
- We are continuing to check the progress of the project (monitoring and evaluation).
The project has faced a number of challenges:
- Some farmers are reluctant in adopting new methods of doing these activities.
- Local beliefs.
- Some calves died. This was due to brucellosis in Nyamililo and respiratory failure in Mabuki.
- One of the cows got sick and sadly died.
- Drought in some areas which caused poor yields.
- Poor cooperation with government agricultural Extension Officers and veterinarians.
- Some churches are not doing so well in community relationships or reaching out to the community. This makes it difficult in making disciples.
To address these challenges, we did the following:
- We are continuing with more education every time the trainers visit the farmers.
- Prayers every Monday morning during team meetings.
- Seminars were conducted by the veterinarians on disease control.
- Continuing to encourage pastors. We expect to see big results after the opening of the church planting school.
- Environmental care seminars, which will enable farmers to have good yields.
- Trainers making efforts to communicate with the Government Agricultural Officers so that they can work together for better results.
- Trainers have been participating in internal training from EI Tanzania under the Country Director.
- Advising village leaders to encourage the youth during their village meetings on the need to participate in different activities.
- Continuing to encourage pastors to play their roles in the project activities.
- Seminars on proper agricultural practices.
- Seminars on calves’ rearing and disease control.
- We have managed to supervise the process of tree planting.
- We have managed to cooperate with government officials.
- Seminars on environmental awareness and tree planting.
- Meetings are held in villages by trainers and government officers from agricultural livestock departments on how they can cooperate with EI in serving the community.
- Data collection has been done very well.
- Seminars have been conducted on various project activities like tree planting, discipleship and many others.
As we look ahead, we plan to develop this project in the following ways:
- VICOBA seminars in all villages. This will be done this year
- Surveying best breeds for sheep and goats in Morogoro and other places.
- Collecting data for harvest in villages.
- Trainers to attend different courses so as to increase more knowledge for project sustainability.
- Sheep and goat seminars.
- To have more demonstration farms.