PROGRAMME FOR RURAL IRRIGATION DEVELOPMENT
PRIDE intends to contribute to the resilience of smallholder communities. Its goal is to reduce vulnerability to food insecurity, to climate change effects and to the vagaries of the market. The Programme Development Objectives is to enable smallholder farmers to sustainably enhance their production levels to such a degree that they can provide for their household nutritional demands and deliver produce to viable markets.
The main thrust of PRIDE is to develop new irrigation schemes, enabling smallholder farmers to transition from low to high value crops and from subsistence to commercial farming.
PRIDE PLANNING AND OPERATIONS
All farmers in the schemes are expected to be members of a Water User Association (WUA) which are expected to manage operations of the scheme. In each WUA, the members should have secure land tenure through a medium to long term lease or granting of a permanent customary user right. PRIDE is adopting a catchment approach to irrigation, which entails an integrated approach to mitigate land degradation and increase production in upstream rain-fed areas while at the same time protecting irrigation assets downstream.
To achieve this, PRIDE has targeted “hot spots” to mitigate land degradation in the catchment area of each scheme. PRIDE is supporting the implementation of sustainable soil and water management techniques using the catchment approach. Village Level Action Plans (VLAPS) and Catchment Management Plans have been developed for each scheme cluster with the participation of farmers. This approach is expected to increase the water buffer capacity of the catchment and consequently increasing resilience to climatic risks.
This sub-component targets the preparation stage for all investments (including component 2) in the scheme cluster areas. This includes land agreements for irrigation development, operation and maintenance of irrigation schemes by WUAs as well as the WUA establishment. Specifically, all activities to achieving a prior and informed consent by landowners for irrigation investment through PRIDE are executed under this sub-component. In the 2018-19 Financial Year (FY), preliminary participatory land agreements for irrigation development with the beneficiary communities were signed in the following irrigation sites: Matoponi and Mlooka in Zomba Witimba (Marko) and Mafinga Hills in Chitipa Kasimba, Mwenilondo and Kasano in Karonga Chipofya in Rumphi Nkhulambe in Phalombe
The main focus of this sub-component is the development of 15 irrigation schemes, covering about 5,200 hectares. Investments in this sub-component are guided by the Irrigation Master Plan and Investment Framework (IMPIF). Environmental and Social Impacts Assessments and related management plans will be carried out in all the target areas upon screening exercise indicating this need. These safeguard studies will be carried out under this component to determine environmental safeguard measures that will require to be integrated into the schemes
Intense rains on land without sufficient soil erosion deterrents often lead to floods and accentuate land degradation. Based on the outcomes of studies in various catchments, soil loss is estimated to average a staggering 20 onnes/ha/annum in Malawi. This contributes to a reduction in crop yields of more than 4% per year. This sub- mponent is aimed at conserving soil and reducing excess soil run-off for the sustainability of the irrigation investments under PRIDE. The specific sub-component goal is to have 40% of the land that was classified as eroded or erosion-prone eclassified as not at-risk in the target catchments.
This sub-component focuses on training of smallholder farmers on good agricultural practices on both rain-fed and irrigated land in the target areas. Further, documentation of GAPs and training of extension staff and lead farmers on GAPs are all covered within this sub-component
This sub-component complements sub-component 2.1 in that, upon enhanced productive capacities of the farmers, the smallholder farmers are thereafter linked to improved markets to increase their income for their livelihoods. The key outcomes and outputs under this sub-component include:- 15,000 smallholder farmers trained in production, post –production, processing and marketing Six commodity platforms established and continued by their members Six product-market combinations selected, researched and documented Twelve viable business cases submitted by private sector agencies aimed to better link markets to irrigated production
Child stunting and anemia are endemic in Malawi and their reduction has so far – despite macroeconomic progress – been sluggish. PRIDE intends to contribute to scaling-up nutrition (SUN) by a combination of actions. These efforts aim to reduce child stunting by 80% at the end of the Programme period. PRIDE plans to impact on reduced levels of child stunting through integrating nutrition aspects in the GAPs that it promotes, by addressing homestead nutrition opportunities and by linking nutrition education to the introduction of improved cooking stoves. It is theorized that time savings from fuel wood collection can be (partially) used to improve the process of food preparation itself. Under this sub-component, PRIDE aims to train 15,000 women on various aspects of nutrition. Efforts to improve utilization of improved cooking stoves and enhanced availability of spare parts of improved cooking stoves on local markets serving the scheme cluster areas will also be pursued under this sub-component.