UN-supported Initiative Aims to Strengthen Climate-resilient Food Security, Reduce Poverty in Zambia
Peter Luethi, Biovision Foundation
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The initiative is expected to help an estimated 940,000 people with climate-resilient food security and poverty reduction measures.

The project will deliver an integrated set of technical services that will help advance SDGs 1 (no poverty), 2 (zero hunger) and 13 (climate action), among other Goals.

8 February 2019: A UN Development Programme (UNDP)-supported initiative has been launched to help the Government of Zambia strengthen climate-resilient food security and poverty reduction measures for smallholder farmers, contributing to the achievement of the SDGs, in particular SDG 2 (zero hunger), SDG 1 (no poverty), SDG 13 (climate action) and SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth).

The initiative titled, ‘Strengthening Climate Resilience of Agricultural Livelihoods in Agro-Ecological Regions I and II in Zambia (SCRALA),’ supported with funding from the Green Climate Fund (GCF), focuses on reducing poverty and vulnerability, while increasing economic diversification and job creation.

Speaking during the project’s launch, Alexander Chiteme, Zambia’s Minister of National Development Planning, said the initiative promotes a paradigm shift by comprehensively addressing the entire value chain and providing a trigger for poor and vulnerable farmers to transition towards a “resilient trajectory for agricultural livelihoods.”

The initiative supports a paradigm shift towards a resilient trajectory for agricultural livelihoods.

UNDP partnered with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP) on the USD 137 million project, which aligns with Zambia’s poverty reduction and food security goals, and the objective of becoming a middle-income country (MIC) by 2030.

More specifically, the project aims to:

  • help smallholder farmers promote water conservation and improve the use of irrigation technologies;
  • support resilient agricultural livelihoods in the face of changing rainfall, increasing drought and floods;
  • promote diversification practices to improve food security and income generation;
  • increase farmers’ access to markets and foster the commercialization of climate-resilient agricultural products;
  • support efforts towards climate resilience for female-headed houses and rural enterprises; and
  • help farmers better manage climate impacts through improved climate information and early warning systems.

The project is expected to help an estimated 940,000 people with climate-resilient food security and poverty reduction measures, and reach over three million indirect beneficiaries (approximately 18% of Zambia’s population) in 16 districts.

In partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture, the Zambia Meteorological Department, and the Water Resources Management Authority, among others, the project aims to deliver an integrated set of technical services that will help advance the SDGs and ensure the scaling up of best practices from pilot climate resilience initiatives to meet the Government of Zambia’s targets on adapting its economy to the impacts of climate change. It will also help Zambia work toward achieving its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) under the Paris Agreement on climate change. [UNDP Climate Change Adaptation News Story] [Project Website]

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