Zambia is a socially, culturally and politically stable and peaceful country. It has an environment that is conducive to enabling both local and international non-governmental organizations to work efficiently and effectively. The political environment is favorable for agricultural development, as the government has made it one of their top developmental priorities. In order to strengthen the livestock sector, the government has established disease free zones to facilitate the import and export of livestock and livestock products. The government is in the process of establishing an anti gender-based violence act that will ensure the protection of women, men and children and afford them equal opportunities in the nation’s development agenda.
However, in spite of the effort that the government of Zambia is putting into place to ensure economic growth, the incidence of poverty in Zambia still remains high. Economic growth has not been pro-poor; for instance the economic growth rate from the agriculture sector where most of the poor participate continues to be low. Poverty in Zambia manifests itself through high unemployment rates and limited access to social services, such as education, health, water and productive resources, like land and capital. Extreme poverty is at 51 percent with higher rates in rural areas (67 percent). Urban poverty is at 20 percent.
Heifer's Work in Zambia
Heifer International started operating in Zambia in 1986 through the Christian Council Of Zambia (CCZ). In 1997, Heifer International registered with the government of Zambia as an independent NGO. A number of projects were initiated throughout the nine provinces of the country with livestock inputs ranging from draft cattle, poultry and goats.
Heifer Zambia works in collaboration with relevant partners to empower needy but viable communities to achieve dignified sustainable livelihoods through capacity building in integrated agriculture, enterprise development, gender equity, good governance, providing appropriate livestock and other resources while mitigating the impact of HIV/AIDS and climate change.
Heifer Zambia envisions reaching 120,000 families by 2020.
Key Services Heifer Provides:
Sustainable agricultural production: Integrated agriculture, gardening and agroecology
Post-harvest management and processing: Agribusiness
Market development: Producers will be linked to organized value-chain players for specific commodities for which they have comparative advantage. The transfer of knowledge and skills in enterprise development will be done to ensure that producers are able to participate fully in their respective value-chains. Building agro-based enterprises in the areas where we work will create employment opportunities, diversify and leverage the incomes of the rural poor through strengthening public-private partnerships.
Technology: Training for farmers in how to construct and promote energy-saving stoves; Facilitating the construction of pit latrines, hand washing facilities and dish drying racks
Nutrition: Activities include resource provision and training to equip project participants with the skills and resources they need to grow and diversify their food crops to sufficiently meet their food and nutrition requirements. Heifer Zambia is working with the National Food and Nutrition Commission to better address the knowledge and practices that perpetuate malnutrition in the communities where we work and to better capture the nutritional outcomes of our projects.
See where Heifer is working around the world to end hunger.
Chibeza Oscar Kalusa, whose family participated in the Mika Village Draft Cattle Project in Zambia, plays a ukulele outside his home.