Patron -  Joanna Lumley, OBE

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Food Security and Climate Change

Research on Prosopis Juliflora

With the increase in population and the growth of arable agriculture, much of the traditionally available pastures have either been taken over for arable agriculture or the migration routes have been made less accessible or closed off altogether. To meet this challenge, PENHA has been working with the Sudan government’s Animal Production Research Centre (APRC) in Khartoum to develop a feed which could be used in the dry season. It will then not be necessary to have to migrate such long distances to find fodder. This research has been able to make a positive use of a recently introduced shrub which has become a major problem in Sudan (and in the Horn of Africa as a whole) called “muskit” (Prosopis Juliflora) by the local people. A simple method has been developed, combining tradition knowledge with a new scientific approach, to use muskit as animal feeds.

Following on from this research, some of the current and recent activities are described below:

Use of Prosopis as an animal feed in Eastern Sudan and Somaliland – we are currently implementing  a two year project which aims to improve the livelihoods of the pastoralist and agro-pastoralist communities by providing them with technical skills in making use of Prosopis as animal feed in Eastern Sudan and Somaliland. The project is funded by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

undefinedAnimal fodder training for women in Kassala State (2011)
The women were trained in modern methods of producing and making better use of the available fodder using simple technologies. This will give them a status in their own society. Working through Plan International, PEAKS (the Pastoral Environmental Association Kassala State) and the APRC, this training was given to 52 women from a number of different villages in the Khashm El Ghirba region of Kassala State.
Food Security for Pastoralists in Sudan and Eritrea
With the support of Oxfam Novib of the Netherlands PENHA has been working on food security in both Eastern Sudan (Kassala State) and in Western Eritrea (GashBarka). The overall objective of the two year programme was to improve food security among pastoralists in both countries. This has been done by consolidating and institutionalising the fodder initiative that it has been developing over the last few years with the APRC. The aim has been to provide a range of activities to empower local communities to tackle food insecurities themselves.

An important part of the programme has been to support local organisations. In Eastern Sudan this has especially meant the support of PEAKS – which now has over 100 subscription paying members with an outreach of over 2,000. PEAKS has run Oxfam NOVIB funded training courses for women (in particular) on the conservation, preparation and use of fodder. PEAKS also developed an early purchasing scheme to obtain fodder when it is readily available (and thus, inexpensive) for use in the time of shortages – and high prices.

Alternative Animal Feeds for Pastoralist Communities in Kassala State (January to October 2008) in two phases around 1000 pastoralists where benefiting from this training with 25% women participation.