Sustainable Agriculture

Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resources Management

SANRM

TSURO’s core activities are on sustainable agriculture and natural resource management. The objectives are to strengthen the ability to self-organize rural communities, increase agricultural production, food and seed sovereignty, sustainable management of pasture and water catchment areas and adaptation to climate change.

SANRM is a specialised department of TSURO Trust with efforts to defeat hunger, climate change and environmental degradation. The main goal is to achieve food security at household level through supporting smallholder farmers in Chimanimani District at the same time making sure that people have regular access to enough high quality food. Under the department of sustainable agriculture and natural resource management, TSURO is involved in innovative Holistic Land and Livestock Management (HLLM) approach, promotion of food availability, promote livestock health and offspring moreover inclusive and participatory approaches to climate change and watershed management (CC&WSM), soil and water management, seed, food and nutrition security and sovereignty as well as community-based protection of species and biodiversity. Under the SANRM, TSURO endeavours to strengthen an increasing number of seed producers on small farms of Chimanimani through training in Agro ecology and organic farming practices, sound Open Pollinated Variety (OPV) seed production, and exchanging seed and knowledge in seed study groups. SANRM facilitates the setting up of agro ecology farmer learning centres, provision of starter packs to seed producers, smallholder farmers   and other agricultural inputs to TSURO members and non TSURO members who are vulnerable throughout the district. To enhance sustainability a Seed bank has been enacted for seed storage for future use as well as a platform for knowledge sharing on seed and other diversified agricultural practices. The department has also been involved in training of beekeepers in a bid to alleviate poverty amongst small holder farmers this has been strengthened through provision of Kenya Top Bar (KTB) hives and beekeeping equipment for starters. All this and more has been made possible through working in partnership with Seed and Knowledge Initiated (SKI), Primates World Relief Development Fund (PWRDF), Tudor Trust, Cotswold Foundation, Weltfriedensdienst e.V. (World For Peace -WFD), LandsAid, Comic Relief, Bread for the World ,Canadian Food Grains Bank (CFGB).

Projects Overview

Seed and Knowledge Initiative

Funded by SKI

The project seeks to increased adoption and production of traditional Open Pollinated Variety (OPV) seed varieties especially small grains, increased adoption of agro ecology practices, improved Trade and exchange network, Advocacy, enhanced farmers research and Seed banking, entrepreneurship in seed and fertilizers- bulky supply and strategic producers in organic manure. Theprogramme promotes practical training for agro ecology including soil improvement. The project has assisted community to venture in participatory initiatives so as to generate knowledge of what is happening to their communities in terms of food security and the communities have been influential in deciding ways to promote food security as well as ways to reduce the impacts of climate change.

Strategies for Rural Community Resilience in Zimbabwe

Funded by Weltfriedensdienst e.V. (World for Peace -WFD)

The objectives of the project are to strengthen the ability to self-organize rural communities, increase agricultural production, food and seed sovereignty, sustainable management of pasture and water catchment areas and adaptation to climate change, involved in innovative Holistic Land and Livestock Management (HLLM) approaches, the initiative has led to the rehabilitation of pasture areas, as evident in the improvement of land cover, increasing biodiversity and water storage capacity. Better food availability has promoted animal health and offspring moreover, including inclusive and participatory approaches to climate change and watershed management (CC&WSM), soil and water management, seed, food and nutrition security and sovereignty as well as community-based protection of species and biodiversity. The project supports women into venturing into livestock management a territory which was considered as male dominated.

Chimanimani Farmer Action Learning Nutrition Security

Funded by Primates World Relief Development Fund (PWRDF)

TSURO Trust identified the need for a nutritional sound community since the community had been hard hit by several drought spells, inconsistent rainfalls  as such came up with a group of 100 source  farmers selected from Farmer Action Learning Groups (FALGs) and Community Health Clubs (CHCs). The project promotes practical actions  to nutrition security through establishment of demonstration plots. Soil fertility improvement, nutrition deficit and land degradation are the key fundamentals of the project, therefore, the project offers trainings on agro-ecological practices to 100 source farmers for them to practice at their homesteads at the same time influencing other farmers within the district. Crop diversity is promoted under the project as it is fundamental to pest control and management. The project promoted women emancipation and harmonious families through trainings on gender and relationship building.

Chimanimani Cyclone Idai Relief and Recovery Project

Funded by LandsAid

LandsAid project aims to help the community of Chimanimani to recovery from the shocks caused by the aftermath of Cyclone Idai that struck Chimanimani on the 15th   of March 2019. Three project thematic areas have been identified which are sanitation and hygiene, small livestock production, organic food and fruit production. Vulnerable households have been selected and trained on fruit tree propagation as well as provided with grafting and budding tools. Forests were greatly damaged during the Cyclone Idai period, therefore in collaboration with Forestry Commission, the project will provide natural tree seedlings to the community. The project has also ensured that the community households have access to improved sanitation facilities through the provision of materials and construction of Blair toilets. It assisted mostly women and the disabled even in the creation of disability friendly toilets. The project also seeks to alleviate poverty and hunger in the district through support for beekeepers and provision of honey harvesting kits.

Beekeeping project

Funded by Cotsworld Foundation

The intention of the project is to invigorate beekeeping in Chimanimani District. Young adults, women and men are incorporated in the project aiming to have a long run sustainability in the uptake of Kenyan Top Bar hives, quality honey production with improved processing, packaging and market skills.

Bread for the world

EWDE

The intention of the project is to support agro-ecological practices and strengthen 22 agro ecology led farmers in the District. The main aim being able to optimize the interaction between plants, animals, humans and the environment while taking into consideration the social aspects that needs to be addressed for a sustainable and fair food system.  The project strengthens productive capacity of AE farmers through trainings. In this project, TSURO focuses on strengthening the intensive adoption of agroecological innovations in the Chimanimani and in Manicaland Province. It seeks to bring an improvement in the productive capacity of agroecology enterprises as well as an increase in the adoption of AE by the smallholder farming communities. The project shall support the setting up of practical large-scale agroecology demonstration sites at lead farmer farmers’ fields, which shall serve as working examples of practical agro ecology. These will engage the youth within the district. These will be linked to commercial productive activities.  These young people will be trained to be champions of AE in their areas. To enhance sustainability of the demonstration sites, TSURO will link the sites to commercial productive activities like production of organic and or bio-fertilizers, where appropriate technology shall be procured and set up to support the production of organic amendments and livestock Moreover, the project seeks to empower young black smiths through training and equipping them in the production of appropriate technologies for seed drying, seed storage, and the processing of small grains. TSURO will work with the department of Climate Change of Bindura University to build the resilience and preparedness of the communities in disaster risk management. Community hazard profiling (hazard mapping) shall be done so as to develop a comprehensive disaster preparedness plan and disaster risk management. The project shall also support the establishment of a hazard forecasting/prediction station. Degraded and lands and ecosystems damaged by cyclone Idai shall be rehabilitated during the project life cycle. Land protection and water harvesting measures shall be done through the establishment of large-scale gabions and swales.