$45,017 needed of $100,000
In this context where access to legal owneship of land is especially challenging, this program purchases parcels of land, subdivides them and sells them to landless families. The land they start with is typically compacted and overgrazed pasture and anything but flat. Along with financing the land, farmers are being trained how to fertilize the soil and prevent erosion, manage plant diseases and insects, and promote new crop varieties and how to market them. It’s a slow process. The first couple of years are comparable to homesteading in North America when the population moved westward. The land barely produces enough for the family’s consumption… let alone making any payments on the land. But then something happens, something transformational. Confidence replaces timidness. Beans, corn and dozens of other crops are planted, including flowers and vegetable, a zinc roof replaces the plastic sheeting on the house, and trees begin producing fruit and give shade where there was none before. The barren land becomes a community whose people work together to build a water system and places for kids to play.
Catalino Finds Success in Climate-Sensitive Farming
Retired pastor Catalino, 60, used to work as a laborer on a big coffee farm. Now, thanks to a loan, training and support from Growing Hope, World Renew, and their local partner AMC, he owns his own land and supports his wife and 11 children through farming.
Once he got his land, Catalino joined a hands-on Farmer Field School to learn ways he could grow food dependably in spite of the unpredictable climate. He and other farmers received instruction on enriching the soil with organic matter, and diversifying their farms with different grains, vegetables, fruit trees and livestock. “Diversification means we have less risk of losing everything in a climate disaster,” says Catalino.
He learned how to draw a picture to plan his farm and activities before starting to plant, and thought about which crops would provide a good income to help him pay off his loan. “Cocoa fit the bill because you harvest it all year and it has good national and international markets,” he says. So he planted it as part of an agroforestry system, along with a variety of vegetables, trees for fruit and wood, live barriers like pineapple to prevent erosion, and bamboo to protect water sources. “We hope to be able to pay off the land we bought through the land bank with three more years of hard work!” says Catalino.
Thanks to Your Support and Generosity
- Farm diversification improves the resiliency of families in an unpredictable climate
- Families are now earning money to pay off loans, improve their farms and homes, purchase household staples they don’t produce on their own, and get their children in school
Nicaragua Matagalpa Program
Led by World Renew and Local Partner Acción Médica Cristiana (AMC)