DIRECT FAMINE RELIEF, IRRIGATION PROJECTS, SURPLUS GRAIN STORAGE FACILITY
Because 80% of the people of Malawi are subsistence farmers who depend, in general, on the rains for crop growth and survival, any prolonged drought is a catastrophe. Unfortunately, such droughts are
recurrent and frequent. There was a drought-induced famine in Malawi from early 2015-Fall 2017.
In 2015 and 2016 we provided money for the purchase of food to be distributed directly to people at risk. This was done several times throughout this period including during our medical mission trip when we were part of the process.
There are rivers, however, in the Kasungu East District, and this makes irrigation feasible as a source of water for crops, and therefore, a defense against starvation. To this end, we have purchased treadle (foot powered) pumps to help bring river water to the fields. These pumps are shared by groups of farmers. We are also working on the idea of waterwheels and ram pumps as well as animal powered irrigation systems to make the area as drought proof as possible.
In the Bible there is a famous story in which Joseph interprets a dream of Pharaoh’s. In this dream there are 7 fat cows who are then devoured by 7 thin cows. He also dreamed of 7 heads of grain, healthy and good which were then swallowed up by 7 thin and scorched stalks of grain. Joseph interpreted this to mean that there would be 7 good crop years followed by 7 years of famine. he told Pharaoh to build storehouses to put grain aside in advance if the famine. At BTM we can’t get this image out of our heads. So we built a storehouse in Mtunthama for the farmers to put part of their current surplus crop aside to be available when the next famine induced drought occurs.
Irrigation success-treadle pump program
10th October, 2016. – Peter Minjale.
On behalf of K2 TASO I am pleased to inform you that the irrigation work with support from Bridges to Malawi (BTM) is going on well. This pump is being shared among four people working along the same river.
On behalf of K2 TASO and the beneficiaries I am once again grateful to BTM for your support.
grain storage-cindy’s house
- 8 Irrigation Systems to help over 56 People grow crops even in the midst of famine induced by drought.
- In 2017 we constructed “Cindy’s House,” future insurance against the next famine by providing a facility for surplus grain storage. It also will provide space for the Mooncatcher Program and for Palliative Care Therapy sessions.
- Over $16,000 Donated to Direct Famine Relief, saving countless lives during the most recent famine.