Final Completion Report Improve Crop Production Capacity and Food Security for the Poor Farmer Households Project Laas Anod District, Sool Region, Somaliland Funded by DF pilot project October 2011 – December 2011
Crop Farming is less than ever a priority to the people of Sool region than the production of livestock- the principle source of food, the central pillars in the nation’s economic structure. The most fundamental method of uplifting rural populations’ economic status is to decrease vulnerability of the marginalized community members to the existing natural and manmade calamities. The pilot project in Lasanod originated from the close cooperation between Kaalmo Diaspora organization and Development fund in Norway and later joined with Agriculture Development Organization as implementing partner.
Agriculture Development Organization (A D O) has undertaken the implementation of DF funded pilot project on Improve crop production capacity and food security for the poor farmer households in Lasanod district. This reportsynthesizes the findings of the pilot project activities and translates them into conclusions and recommendations. The project implementation started in the month of November 2011 and successfully completed in February 2012. The overall aim of the project was to improve livelihoods of poor farming communities in target settlements, through increased crop production capacities and intuitional capacity building. Supply of essential farm inputs was provided target and selected beneficiaries. 10 water pumps, 2,600 EP pipes, 100 sets of farm hand tools, 50 kg of vegetable seeds, 300 kg of cereal seeds were purchased and distributed for target farmers. The project has supported in conducting 2 farmer training courses and on-the-farm technical support for 20 contact farmers from the 50 target beneficiaries to build their technical skills and knowledge on best practices of crop production and extension services. ADO in collaboration with elders committees identified and selected one demonstration farm and provided basic farm inputs such as hand tools, animal manure and seeds to owners of the demonstration plots, in addition to extensive on-site training. The aim of the demonstration farms was to promote and disseminate best agriculture practice to replace traditional practices to contribute high yield/hector for the trainees and display new benefit-able and fruitful methods. The parameters for demonstration included; new crop varieties, proper crop spacing, intercropping techniques, crop rotation and land preparation.
The project has strengthened community farmer institutions through provision of trainings and brought together farmer committees from the four target villages to strengthening existing farmer cooperative. The members in the BCFU were trained on leadership capacity management and cooperative principles. Despite the fact the BCFU has played great role for implementation of pilot project, but there limitations in terms of management skills, development of internal by-laws of the cooperative. 4 shallow wells have been constructed in Waqdari, Odogooye, and Daryare villages. Concrete rings with cover slap installed in hand dug shallow wells in river bed to avoid continue collapse of the wells during the rainy seasons.
Despite the fact that the project has made commendable success in the implementation of the overall activities, there were certain issues encountered and particular lessons learned during the course of the project. There was high demand for land levelling and tillage operation due to the long absence of the farmers from the fields, soil erosion control needs comparatively very extensive labour based techniques and tools, water sources for human consumption were destroyed and needed rehabilitation. The level of both skills and knowledge on appropriate farming were in-adequately lower among the farmer communities in the four target villages, when compared with other farmers in Somaliland. The need for extensive extension training and other institutional capacity building activities in terms of management, advocacy skills, conflict resolutions skills, was even more important than other farm input as learnt during the project implementation. While region is contested areas by both Somaliland and Putland security threat in the region is one of the main reason hindered humanitarian and reintegration program in the region.