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The difference we make, 2010
There are 1.4 billion extremely poor people in the world, living on less than US$1.25 a day. About 1 billion of these men, women and children live in the rural areas of developing countries. Nearly 2 billion rural people live on less than US$2 a day. Most are smallholder farmers and their families, who depend on agriculture for their livelihoods. Today, they must cope with rapid and unprecedented changes. Climate change, a growing world population, and volatile food and energy prices are pushing more people into extreme poverty and hunger. For the first time in human history, the number of hungry people has passed 1 billion. On top of this, tens of millions more people are expected to go hungry by 2020 as a result of climate change.Additional languages: Arabic, English, Spanish, French, Italian
Enabling poor rural people to overcome poverty in Syria
Since 1982, IFAD has supported seven projects in Syria with loans totalling US$126.2 million for projects with a total value of US$474 million. The organization has also provided a number of grants, including technical assistance grants to support women’s empowerment. IFAD works in partnership with the government, other donors, NGOs, local institutions and civil society organizations. It finances initiatives which enable poor rural people in Syria’s agricultural settlement areas to improve their incomes and living conditions. IFAD is working towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals and its interventions endeavour to reduce poverty and promote gender equality and environmental sustainability.
Eritrea - Catchments and landscape management project
The project will reverse the decline in productivity of Eritrea’s soil resources; restore vegetative cover and habitat diversity in areas of degraded rangelands, forests and woodlands; and increase biodiversity within crop, livestock and forest production landscapes.
Ethiopia Community-based integrated natural resources management in Lake Tana watershed
Ethiopia is one of the world’s poorest countries, with an annual per capita income of only US$174. Nearly half of the population lives under the poverty line, and more than 12 million people are chronically or periodically food insecure. Agriculture generates approximately 50 per cent of the GDP and 90 per cent of export earnings. Despite its importance, agricultural performance has improved little over the past 50 years and food security has deteriorated. Low agricultural productivity and chronic food insecurity are direct results of the ongoing degradation of natural resources in the Ethiopian highlands.
Niger - Agricultural and rural rehabilitation and development initiative
The GEF-funded Agricultural and Rural Rehabilitation and Development Initiative, which will complement the ongoing IFAD-financed Agricultural and Rural Rehabilitation and Development Initiative Project (ARRDI), will similarly focus on southern Niger’s Maradi region – home to 20 per cent of the nation’s population – targeting poor and extremely poor communities vulnerable to environmental risk, with special emphasis on women and youth.
Community-driven development decision tools for rural development programmes
This Decision Tools document is the final outcome of five years of studies, debates and workshop discussions. These Tools will prove useful to Governments, development practitioners and field technical staff that are financing, designing or implementing CDD projects for rural poverty reduction.
First mile project - factsheet 3
Mobile signal coverage is expanding fast. More and more people own and use mobile phones and some are finding innovative ways to use them to enhance their earning potential. In the Republic of Tanzania, Internet connectivity is evolving rapidly, but few people in rural areas have access to the technology. The use of mobile phones and text messages, or SMS, is still far more widespread than e-mail. Yet the speed of change is dramatic. Communication technologies that allow wireless access within a 30-km radius are being extended throughout Tanzania and tests are verifying the feasibility of using GPRS modems in remote districts. “It was important that we adapt quickly, looking for ways to ensure that everybody benefits from these changes,” says Clive Lightfoot, technical advisor of the First Mile Project. “We want to make certain that groups of people are not left behind and that the revolution is also directed towards reducing rural poverty.”
Fighting water scarcity in the Arab countries
The Arab countries account for more than 5 per cent of the world’s population, but less than 1 per cent of global water resources. And as a consequence of the phenomena associated with climate change, the region is facing an even greater water shortage. For 30 years now, IFAD and its partners in the region have worked to develop effective, replicable solutions to help poor rural communities manage their scarce water resources. More than half of IFAD’s programmes and projects in the region include a focus on water.
Enabling poor rural people to overcome poverty in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela
IFAD has approved six loans to the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela for an approximate total of US$80.0 million. The organization also approved two technical assistance grants in 1991 and 1998 for the Regional Training Programme in Rural Development, implemented by the Foundation for Training and Applied Research in Agrarian Reform (CIARA), which is part of the Ministry of Agriculture and Land. IFAD’s mandate to reduce poverty by improving the living conditions and incomes of poor rural people faces vigorous challenges and opportunities. IFAD works in partnership with the government and other donors, financing programmes and projects that target the poorest of the poor, particularly small farmers, landless people, indigenous peoples and ethnic minorities, and rural women in general. CIARA, one of IFAD’s principal partners in recent rural development projects, plays an important role as administrator of decentralized development programmes for the country's Ministry of Popular Power for Agriculture and Land.
IFAD and rural water investments
IFAD is currently engaged in over 230 loan operations in 85 countries. About two thirds of that portfolio is related to community-based natural resource management. Poor rural people and their institutions are at the core of this approach. Water is critical to these men and women pastoralists, fishers, farmers, young and old, part- or full-time, urban or rural, indigenous, tribal or otherwise often marginalized people. It is the key entry point for improving their livelihoods.
Interventions for improving livelihoods
Climate change represents an additional challenge to rural people in SSA – and a further reason for investment in water control. Smallholder farmers, pastoralists and artisanal fishers are among the most vulnerable to this threat. While projections of changes in annual rainfall vary across Africa, these groups will experience the negative effects of increased temperature and extreme events. For them, enhanced control of water will become critical in building resilience to increased climate variability.
Reinforcing gender equity
Women constitute two-thirds of the 1.2 billion poor people in the world. The great majority live in rural areas of sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, regions that are also home to most of the world’s ‘water poor’ – those with limited access to reliable, safe supplies of water for productive and domestic uses. The role women play in reducing food insecurity and poverty – through their knowledge of multiple uses of water, crop production, local biodiversity, soils and local water resources – is recognized internationally. However, despite this, they are often still excluded from decision-making processes in new water management approaches and other natural resource allocation projects and initiatives. Globalization, changing market dynamics and climate change are altering the rural context for most poor rural people, resulting in increased vulnerability to natural hazards and economic uncertainties, above all for women.
La pobreza rural en Uruguay
El trabajo del FIDA en Uruguay se desarrolla en dos niveles distintos aunque complementarios: • a nivel subregional, en el marco de las instituciones del MERCOSUR, promueve una plataforma de diálogo entre gobiernos y asociaciones de pequeños productores, con el fin de aumentar la relevancia política de la agricultura familiar y la inversión pública en su favor; • a nivel nacional, proporciona financiación y asistencia técnica al gobierno para la ejecución de programas y proyectos que traduzcan en acciones las políticas públicas definidas en el ámbito de la subregión y adaptadas al contexto del país.
IFAD and GEF partnership on climate change - Fighting a global challenge at the local level
There is a general consensus that rural areas and rural livelihood systems will bear the brunt of climate change across the globe. More frequent extreme weather events such as heat waves and intense precipitation are likely to place the livelihoods of many rural people at risk. Africa is expected to be the most vulnerable continent to climate change, and will face a decline in both food security and agricultural activity, particularly in relation to subsistence farming. The impact of climate change on agriculture is expected to be devastating in many parts of the developing world. Especially in the least developed countries, declining crop productivity and livestock deaths associated with further global warming pose a serious threat to food security and national economies. Nonetheless, vulnerability to climate change can be exacerbated by poverty, marginality and low adaptive capacity. An integrated approach is therefore needed to bridge the gap between local development and the global challenge of climate change.
MfDR at IFAD - an integrated system
As a signatory to the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness, IFAD is fully committed to management for development results (MfDR) as a means to improve development performance, not only in the programmes it supports, but also within IFAD itself: ‘focus on results’ is one of the organization’s core values.
IFAD, the African Union and the New Partnership for Africa's Development
IFAD has been working closely with the African Union (AU) and the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) since they were established in July 2001, seeking new ways to combat rural poverty across the continent. African leaders created NEPAD to promote sustainable development and strengthen efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the international community’s time-bound targets to meet the needs of the world’s poorest people. Within the framework of NEPAD, the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) was prepared in June 2002.
Enabling poor rural people to overcome poverty in Lesotho
The main objectives of IFAD’s operations in the country are to improve food security and family nutrition. Since 1980, IFAD has supported agricultural development by investing a total of US$64.3 million in seven programmes and projects to reduce poverty in the country’s rural areas. Normally, Lesotho is not in a position to grow enough food to feed its growing population. Offsetting the effects on poor households of declining agricultural production, IFAD investments support the efforts of small-scale farmers to ensure food security for their families and improve their incomes. Increased productivity is a key to achieving these aims and to reducing poverty in rural areas. IFAD finances programmes and projects that encourage poor people’s participation in the planning and development of income-generating activities, including microenterprises.
IFAD' s Action Plan for Improving its Development Effectiveness
In 2004 and 2005, IFAD underwent a comprehensive Independent External Evaluation (IEE). The evaluation was conducted to determine IFAD’s contribution to rural poverty reduction, examine the relevance of its mission and objectives, assess its corporate learning and performance, and make recommendations on policy directions and steps to improve IFAD’s performance. It was, at the time, probably the most ambitious exercise of its kind for a United Nations agency, breaking new ground in addressing institutional performance in terms of impact.
Initiative de développement agricole et rural pour le Sahel (SARDI)
Le SARDI est une réponse concertée, à la fois à court et à long termes, aux causes structurelles profondes des crises alimentaires dans la sous-région sahélienne, traduisant un engagement à en finir avec le spectre de la famine et la résurgence des crises. L’initiative contribuera à réduire la pauvreté des ménages et à prévenir l’insécurité alimentaire conjoncturelle et la malnutrition à travers : • l’accroissement de la production agricole, de la productivité et l’amélioration de l’accès des producteurs au marché • l’amélioration des systèmes d’alerte précoce des Etats et le développement de systèmes de gestion des crises
Enabling the rural poor to overcome poverty in Swaziland
IFAD’s intention is to help poor rural households by creating sustainable jobs, reducing poverty and guaranteeing food security. To meet this goal IFAD places emphasis on intensifying agricultural output and supporting smallholders within irrigation schemes, as well as helping develop small rural businesses. In particular, IFAD works to improve linkages to financial services and markets, to support providers of financial and marketing services and to strengthen the capacity of poor rural communities and their institutions. The Government of Swaziland, key stakeholders and IFAD are jointly designing a new investment focusing on rural finance and enterprise development.