“In response to increased flooding and food insecurity, women in Salima, Malawi are boosting agricultural productivity by sharing resources and knowledge through local farmers’ clubs.
Climate change has had such a huge impact on agriculture and on women’s rights…In community after community, houses and belongings are ruined, crops are washed away, and livestock die. Because there are fewer or no crops to sell at market, families have to buy more food and thus have less money. With less money, children can’t go to school, more women enter into sex work, and girls as young as 13 are sold into marriage.
But with the little resources they have, the women cope the best they can. Every month, three representatives from each farmers club in Salima meet at SAWEG to discuss successes and challenges in their crop production, new agricultural methods, and other issues that affect their lives.
Loss of food and income due to failing harvests was one of the major challenges. Because women were no longer able to grow enough food to feed their families with their individual gardens, the farmers’ clubs decided it would be better to pool resources into community (club) gardens. Garden club members share tools, seeds, and knowledge of diverse farming methods, such as the use and application of compost manure. This has led to increased production, and club members each take home more food than they did with just their individual gardens.”