Lending Library Brings New Hope for the Next Harvest

Foundation for Sustainable Development   
August 2nd, 2011

Credit: WikiMedia

As is the case with many underserved communities in Uganda, residents of the rural village of Kaboyo are plagued by an inability to generate sufficient income from their agricultural enterprises. As small-scale rural subsistence farmers, they struggle to provide their families with necessities such as education, healthcare, nutritional meals, and clean water. Though the climate provides a heavy rainy season and the soil is fertile, Kaboyo community members identified many compounding factors that limit their ability to develop profitable farms. The dry season plunders household savings, postponing the purchase of seeds and limiting their growing season. Some families own very few if any farming tools, limiting the amount of land they can sow. The inability to store crops after harvest forces farmers to sell their product at a low market value. And motorized transportation to the market several kilometers away where they sell their crops often falls beyond most families’ budget.


Combating each of these challenges as individuals proved impossible, but with their combined resources and support from FSD, they were able to design a project that delivers innovative solutions to each of these challenges. FSD and local NGO partner, Community Welfare Services (COWESER), recently provided Tweyambe Women’s Group with the necessary resources to start a lending library. This project, named “Lending for Growth,” introduces a community lending system whereby members can borrow items to supplement their lack of capacity. The lending library contains seeds, farming tools, bicycles, and clay to make pot-in-pot refrigeration systems. Members are taught to train new members on how to build the pots that allow families to store their crops after harvest. To further ensure the sustainability of their efforts, members replenish the seed stores after harvest and bi-annual member fees are used to repair tools and buy new materials. Members of the Tweyambe Women’s Group are some the most marginalized of their community, yet they are becoming the most innovative and vital.

FSD trains students and professionals to support our grassroots partners working on the frontlines 365 days a year to end the cycle of poverty in their communities. Our short and long-term Training Programs Abroad allow you to meaningfully contribute to projects like the MLPC initiative highlighted above. Many of our partners in India, East Africa, and Latin America are seeking support this fall. Learn more about how you can get involved this year >>

[Source: Foundation for Sustainable Development]

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