January 19, 2012
By Simon Chambers
Between August 2008 and December 2011, PWRDF programs in Bangladesh, Burundi, Mozambique, and Tanzania were funded in conjunction with the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA). Working with local partner organizations in each country, the $4,956,000 program reached over 557,000 people during the three years of the project.
Partners’ programs focused on health care, environmental sustainability, and promoting good governance, including the construction of health clinics, working with farmers to promote chemical-free farming techniques, and a focus on enhancing the role of women in local communities.
Over the next few weeks, PWRDF will be highlighting several of the stories of success from this program.
Josephine Kabanga is a farmer, a widow, and the mother of six children. She had been living as a refugee in Tanzania, but returned home to Burundi where she received training as part of the PWRDF-CIDA program, implemented by the Anglican Diocese of Bujumbura. Here is her story:
When I came back from the refugee camp in Tanzania, I did not have anything. My husband’s family had taken back our land. I had to start from scratch. I was living in my mother’s house that had a small plot of land, but we did not use it for agriculture. In the refugee camp we didn’t have much to do. I didn’t even know how to work the land and grow vegetables and fruits. Through the program I learned so much. I have planted “˜lenga-lenga’ [amaranth], onions, and egg plant. I have also planted bananas, papayas and an avocado tree. I have a goat and my children can have milk from it every day. We don’t go hungry anymore. I sell lenga-lenga in the market and bring home 6,000 Burundian francs a day. Some days even more. Before, I could not even make 1,000 Burundian francs a week. We had our first papayas from our trees and next year I will have my first bunch of bananas. My life has changed. And I am sure it will continue to change even more.