Inspiring Others at “Sharing Meetings”

Local partner SEL often combines field visits or training sessions with “sharing meetings” to give participants a chance to express how their lives have changed, and for others to take note. A small sampling of the inspiring tales:

— Tiganda said that she’d never been able to save money until she joined a Village Savings and Lending Association (VSLA).  She soon bought a cart which has proved to be a huge benefit to her, her family and her village. “If it were not for the VSLA, I would not have the cart today. I use it for my field work. My children transport water in it. I bring my crops in with it, and deliver food to my animals. I take pregnant women and the sick to the health center, and my husband makes contracts to rent it out. It’s a godsend. Many of my neighbors have joined a VSLA so that they can buy their own cart.”

— Josué had noticed his neighbors “wasting time” by spreading leaves and crop residues on their fields. He also noticed their harvests were better than his, but never put two and two together until he got a visit from an Agriculture Household Advisor. “He told me that covering the soil in organic matter allows it to keep moisture. It fertilizes the soil and makes crops grow better. I immediately did it myself. At planting time, I intercropped beans with my millet. Throughout the growing season, my field was completely green; there was no part that was withered. At harvest time I reaped more than other years. I stored the millet and beans for my family to eat, and the bean leaves for my animals. It was enough to support us until another harvest, so I did not need to pay for food.”

— Yalihana reported that, “The last two years I have had a bad harvest. Some parts of my field refused to grow, and other parts that did grow didn’t produce much. I worked until I was exhausted, but I still did not earn anything. Then one day, at the end of our VSLA meeting, the Agriculture Household Advisor from our group got up and started telling us about digging zai holes to plant in. You put compost or animal manure in them and plant when the rains start. I mobilized my nine children to help me dig zai holes and fill them. My millet was the first to sprout in the village. Even though there were times when the rains stopped, my millet stayed moist, and I had a good harvest. I am happy as this practice has helped me feed my family and earn money, and is serving as a good lesson to others.”

West Africa Program
Led by World Renew and Local Partner SEL (Showing Everyone Love)

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