The nation of Malawi is one of the most densely populated countries in the world and remains largely underdeveloped. Most of its people reside in rural areas and rely on agriculture for their livelihoods. Winrock’s history in the Sub-Saharan African nation has been diverse, from increasing educational opportunities for African girls to establishing a set of baseline data on biofuel production and studying their environmental and socio-economic impacts. Winrock has also worked to prevent and eliminate the practice of child labor in agriculture.
Small farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa are better able to achieve food security and earn a sufficient livelihood when they receive assistance from the continent’s agricultural colleges and universities. This program helps bolster the ranks of agricultural experts by introducing new opportunities for mid-career professionals to participate in extension education and degree programs at African universities.
Cooking food is one of life’s most essential tasks. Yet, it can also be deadly. Pollutants from cooking with solid fuels in open fires or rudimentary stoves are estimated to cause 4 million premature deaths a year, while also contributing to global climate change. Inefficient traditional cooking also threatens natural resources. To address these problems, Winrock works with cookstove manufactures to help them design and build higher-quality, better-performing cookstoves that meet consumer’s needs. This EPA-funded project provides this support through trainings, webinars and study tours all over the world — and through support to international voluntary standards.
Malawi’s forestland is disappearing. To counteract that trend, this project seeks to encourage improved land management practices. As part of a collaborative effort, Winrock will provide technical assistance to the Government of Malawi’s Environmental Affairs Department to create and implement its National Greenhouse Gas Inventory System. This improved system will supply information vital to understanding the climate change impacts of improved land management practices and policies.
Social and economic factors push many children in Africa and Southern Brazil out of classrooms and into tobacco fields and other forms of child labor. This robs children and entire communities of the chance to forge a better future. Building on the initial successes of the Achieving Reduction of Child Labor in Support of Education (ARISE) project, this follow-on program raises awareness about child labor and helps improve family livelihoods so that children can pursue their education. The program also works with government officials to strengthen and enforce laws preventing child labor.
To be effective and long-lasting, solutions to Sub-Saharan Africa’s food security challenges must be homegrown. That belief drives this USAID-funded Feed the Future initiative to develop the capacity of African agriculture professionals, institutions and stakeholders to reduce hunger and poverty. The program seeks agricultural transformation by engaging stakeholders at the continental, regional, country, and local levels to improve the effectiveness of institutions, strengthen the capacity to manage policy change, and promote effective participation of non-state actors.
Overcrowded classrooms, low pay and limited professional development makes it hard to be a teacher in Malawi. And low teacher morale makes it tough for children to get a quality education. Japan Tobacco International, which sources much of its tobacco in Malawi and funds the ARISE pilot program there, is providing training and resources to teachers in three rural areas of the country where ARISE is active. This support for teachers helps improve the quality of education and contributes to lower levels of child labor.
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