Enabling poor rural people
to overcome poverty

Guinea pigs bring prosperity to poor women in China

Poor women in a remote region of China have built up their businesses and worked their way out of poverty thanks to an IFAD-supported project that has taught them how to raise guinea pigs. The meat from these fast-breeding animals is a delicacy in Chinese cities and the project participants have tapped into these markets. Five years after the project they took part in closed, the women were still reaping the benefits.Read more

Conservation practices made worthwhile

Deep ravines and gullies gutting into hillsides define the rolling valleys within the Lake Tana watershed. Soil erosion is a widespread primary factor degrading fertile lands within Ethiopia, causing an estimated loss of two billion tons of fertile soils, and reducing the agricultural GDP but 2.3% a year.Read more

A Roots-to-Riches Story

Southeast Asia's transformation of cassava from a humble root crop from the Americas into a prized industrial input has an almost fairy tale quality. Until just a few decades ago, the crop was considered a secondary staple, playing a minor role in the region's rice-centered food system. But since the 1970s, cassava production has expanded by several orders of magnitude first in Thailand, then Vietnam and Cambodia, to meet rapidly rising demand from the livestock feed, starch, and biofuel markets.

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Empowering small farmers through Farmers Field Schools

Farmers Field Schools (FFS) were first introduced in Zanzibar in 2007 as part of the Agricultural Services Support Programme (ASSP) supported by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). The programme's overall objectives were to improve food security and rural income and reduce poverty, still prevalent on the island in spite of the development of tourism.

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Over 400 million poor rural people have participated in programmes and projects supported by IFAD and partners around the world, and they all have stories to tell. Here are some of those stories, featuring women and men who are working to overcome poverty and determine the direction of their own lives. These ground-level accounts of hope and empowerment reside on the Rural Poverty Portal, powered by IFAD.