To 33-year-old Memory Nthakomwa, a young farmer from the Mwakifwamba village in Malawi, it seemed like the upcoming farming season would be difficult like the rest. She had witnessed what climate change had done to last year’s crops—with consistent dry spells and floods, crop production had drastically decreased, yielding very little. Memory knew something had to change, or she the results would be the same as last year.
Shortly after this realization, Memory was introduced to a new farming method known as conservation agriculture (CA). This technique was introduced to help ease crop failure during dry spells and floods. Memory learned the importance of rotating crops, making sure the soil was fertile and how to intercrop seeds so that when the effects of climate change did occur, she would be more prepared.
At first, Memory was very hesitant. She had farmed a certain way her entire career, and now she was about to take a risk and attempt something new. However, after attending a workshop hosted by PWS&D’s local partner and learning more about CA and its potential, she became optimistic and inspired.
“I was quite impressed with what I saw,” Memory explains. “When I saw a very old lady practicing CA and how she articulated CA issues, I challenged myself and said I would increase my CA field in the coming farming year.”
Armed with inspiration, Memory set out to start cultivating her crops using conservation agriculture. Today, she has not only increased the amount of lands she farms use CA, but she is equipped with the tools and techniques she needs to combat the effects of climate change and recurring hunger.
Today, Memory is a lead farmer in her village, helping others put into practice conservation agriculture.
*This project receives support from Canadian Foodgrains Bank. PWS&D is a member of the Foodgrains Bank, a partnership of 15 churches and church agencies working together to end global hunger.