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Land tenure security and poverty reduction
Land is fundamental to the lives of poor rural people. It is a source of food, shelter, income and social identity. Secure access to land reduces vulnerability to hunger and poverty. But for many of the world’s poor rural people in developing countries, access is becoming more tenuous than ever.
Seeds of innovation: Tapping into the knowledge of indigenous peoples
The Indigenous Peoples Assistance Facility (IPAF)1 finances small projects designed and implemented directly by indigenous peoples’ communities and their organizations. The projects are selected through global calls for proposals, based on a competitive process. In managing the IPAF when it was established in 2007, IFAD realized that the Facility was not only a grant-making mechanism, but it also contained a wealth of knowledge derived from the project proposals themselves. With its limited funding, the IPAF can support only a small number of these proposals. Thus, a knowledge-harvesting mechanism was set up with funding from the Initiative for Mainstreaming Innovation (IMI).
European Union Food Facility Programme IFAD-ECOWAS-ICRISAT
To address food security problems and soaring prices for basic commodities, in December 2008 the European Union launched a Food Facility totalling €1 billion spread over three years, from 2009 to 2011. Under this initiative, the regional programme IFAD-EU-ECOWAS Food Facility was established with a budget of €20 million. The regional programme covers a number of countries in West Africa. To assure food security and protect the population from recurrent crises, countries dependent on foreign aid for much of their food supply, such as Benin, Mali, Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, have designed strategies and programmes to support food security that are intended to increase food production through the intensification of strategic crops such as rice, cassava, yams and ground nuts, and widespread use of selected seeds and mineral fertilizers.
IFAD and Belgian Survival Fund Joint Programm - 25 years of cooperation
The Belgian Fund for Food Security (BFFS) was created by the Belgian Parliament in 1983 in response to the more than one million drought- and faminerelated deaths in East Africa. BFFS provides grants to pay for rural development projects, with a focus on food security and nutrition, in some of the poorest countries in Africa, helping extremely poor people to become healthier and more productive and lowering the risk that they will face starvation. The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), a specialized United Nations agency, was established as an international financial institution in 1977 as one of the major outcomes of the 1974 World Food Conference. It is dedicated to eradicating poverty and hunger in rural areas of developing countries. Through low-interest loans and grants, it develops and finances programmes and projects that enable poor rural people to overcome poverty themselves.
The International Year of Family Farming (IYFF)
What is the International Year of Family Farming? Small family farms are the key to reducing poverty and improving global food security. The United Nations declared 2014 the International Year of Family Farming (IYFF) to recognize the importance of family farming in reducing poverty and improving global food security. The IYFF aims to promote new development policies, particularly at the national but also regional levels, that will help smallholder and family farmers eradicate hunger, reduce rural poverty and continue to play a major role in global food security through small-scale, sustainable agricultural production. The IYFF provides a unique opportunity to pave the way towards more inclusive and sustainable approaches to agricultural and rural development that: Recognize the importance of smallholder and family farmers for sustainable development; Place small-scale farming at the centre of national, regional and global agricultural, environmental and social policies; Elevate the role of smallholder farmers as agents for alleviating rural poverty and ensuring food security for all; as stewards who manage and protect natural resources; and as drivers of sustainable development.
GFR 2013 Official Report
This report proceeds from the Global Forum on Remittances held in Bangkok, Thailand in 2013.
The Smallholder Advantage: A new way to put climate finance to work
IFAD sees smallholder farmers as more than just victims of climate change: they are a vital part of the solution to the ‘wicked’ climate change problem.
Learning from each other: South-South and triangular cooperation in East and Southern Africa
South-South and triangular cooperation (SSTC) has become an integral part of IFAD’s support to ESA programmes. The transfer of effective approaches and technologies enables countries of the South to join forces in meeting their aims of reducing rural poverty and ensuring food security. By using experts from other countries in project design, for instance, or setting up learning and sharing opportunities in the region, IFAD has helped foster such exchanges.
IFAD Policy brief 4: Promoting the resilience of poor rural households
The post-2015 development agenda can be structured to encourage governments and other actors to focus on strengthening the resilience of poor rural people and their livelihoods. A number of targets that provide the basis to achieve this have already been proposed, particularly focusing on the promotion of more sustainable practices in agriculture.
IFAD Policy brief 1- Leveraging the rural-urban nexus for development
IFAD POST-2015 POLICY BRIEF The post-2015 development agenda is expected to inform policies and investments at various levels in key areas for sustainable development. It is important that this agenda include goals, targets and indicators that focus attention on reducing rural-urban inequalities, investing in the rural space, and promoting better rural-urban connectivity, taking advantage of urbanization and the rural-urban nexus.
IFAD Policy brief 3: Investing in smallholder family agriculture for global food security and nutrition
Key sources in the post-2015 debate stress the role of agriculture in food security and nutrition, and suggest possible targets underscoring the role of agriculture with respect to food security and nutrition.
Youth: Investing in young rural people for sustainable and equitable development
Young people are the future. But all too often in today’s world young women and men are marginalized and excluded – from decent employment and from crucial decisions about how to address the big challenges that face us all. Their voices are rarely heard in democratic debate and their needs and views are rarely reflected in policies and programmes. Yet more than ever the world needs young people’s ideas, their talents and their energy. In rural areas, we particularly need their drive and innovative skills to sustainably produce the food required by an increasingly populous and urbanized world.
Linking matching grants with loans: Experiences and lessons learned from Ghana
Matching grants (MGs) are used increasingly by multilateral and bilateral institutions, including the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Bank, to cofinance productive assets and investments. Although confined initially to investments with clear public good characteristics, their use has spread. They finance a broad array of assets and productivity-enhancing technologies for groups, companies and individuals, benefiting the private sector directly with clear private goods characteristics. MGs are used as a short-term financing instrument to promote diffusion of technologies and enable target groups to carry out productivity-enhancing investments, compensating for the limited availability and high costs of term finance. At times, MGs incorporate a “crowding in” mechanism to attract financiers by sharing the risks and increasing the effective collateral value of the asset being financed. They are also used to support innovations that, by their nature, are more risky and less likely to attract loan finance. Despite their appeal as a relatively simple instrument to address access to finance constraints in the short run, there are several risks, which can limit their effectiveness and impact. When poorly designed and poorly implemented, MGs can distort and crowd out private and public investments.
IFADs approach in Small Island Developing States: A global response to island voices for food security
This paper outlines IFAD’s strategic approach to enhancing food security and promoting sustainable smallholder agriculture development in Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in the context of exacerbated impacts of climate change and persistent challenges to market access. A renewed approach will provide an opportunity for increasing results and impacts from agriculture and fisheries, reducing the high transaction costs of project delivery in SIDS, adjusting to an ever-changing development environment and – most of all – avoiding the overlooking of SIDS’ persistent fragility and the risk that they are cut off from development assistance.
FAO-IFAD Using livelihood to map best investments in water
In 2005, IFAD and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) formed a partnership to promote a better understanding of the links between rural poverty, livelihoods and water access. Together they developed an approach to map information relating to poverty, livelihood activities and water availability across sub-Saharan Africa. By correlating this information, they have been able to substantiate context-specific proposals for water investments.
Youth and agriculture: Key challenges and concrete solutions
This publication shows how tailor-made educational programmes (such as the Junior Farmer Field and Life Schools approach) can provide rural youth with the skills and insights needed to engage in farming and adopt environmentally friendly production methods.
Guidelines for Integrating Climate Change Adaptation into Fisheries and Aquaculture Projects
These Guidelines are the result of an extensive process of consultation and a concerted effort that brought together different fisheries and climate change experts in different moments in time. Substantive inputs were provided by a range of stakeholders, including smallholder farmers, aquaculturists, academics, personnel from ministries of agriculture and environment, and development cooperation partners.
Serving Smallholder Farmers: Recent Developments in Digital Finance
This Focus Note introduces some recent developments in this rapidly changing space. The featured case studies (i) identify traditional pain points in serving smallholder farmers (such as the cost and risk of making payments to farmers and delivering subsidized credit), (ii) discuss how DFS are being used to overcome these pain points, and (iii) highlight some initial obstacles and successes.
Collaboration for strengthening resilience - Country case study - Kenya
In 2014, Kenya was newly classified as a lower-middle-income country, with financial services and infrastructure expected to drive growth of 5 to 6 percent annually over the next five years. At the same time, the country is still in protracted crisis, with recurrent natural disasters, conflict, severe drought and hunger affecting livelihoods. Overall, about 10 million Kenyans suffer from chronic food insecurity and poor nutrition. Recurring drought means that a larger number of people in a growing population are unable to meet their food needs. Good seasons between droughts are increasingly rare, making it difficult for households to recover from crisis to crisis. Severe land degradation, primarily caused by deforestation, unsuitable agricultural practices and flooding, has had a negative impact on agricultural production.
Transforming rural areas in Asia and the Pacific
Among the world’s developing regions, Asia and the Pacific region has witnessed the deepest and fastest structural transformation. The Green Revolution that began in the 1960s spurred the rapid spread of improved varieties of cereal crops, accompanied by public investments in and policy support to the agricultural sector. As a result, productivity of wheat and rice increased dramatically, stimulating economic growth and reducing rural poverty. In the following decades, and especially since 2000, the structural transformation further accelerated, leading to a declined share of the sector in both output and GDP and, to a lesser extent, in the total employment. Facilitated by a conducive institutional and policy environment, the process brought about a more diversified, market-oriented and high-value agricultural production; the expansion of food processing, agribusiness, food retailing and exports; and increased domestic and international competitiveness of agriculture – albeit with country and subregional differences. Nevertheless, poverty, deprivation and hunger remain widespread. Two thirds of the world’s poor and hungry people live in the region, mostly in rural environments. Income inequality has been rising fast in a number of countries, especially between urban and rural areas, with adverse effects on poverty reduction and increased risk of social conflict and political instability. Moreover, the countries and subregions are at different stages of the structural transformation process. In most developing economies, labour productivity in agriculture is still low and the shift of the agricultural workforce to other sectors is yet to take place. Therefore, agriculture remains a critical livelihood option and the largest employer sector for most rural people.