Able to smile again – Miremba’s Story

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Miremba* is a widow who lives in Mafudu county, in Eastern Uganda, with seven children that she cares for.

Since her husband died in 2009, her life has become more and more difficult.

Before her husband passed away, they ran a small bar together. It brought in only a small sum of money, but it was enough for the family was to get by.

Once he was gone though, Miremba struggled to run the bar on her own.

At the same time, she saw the negative effects that alcohol abuse was having on the community and so she decided to stop running the bar all together.

She moved to full time farming work, but since her family had only a small farming plot, she was unable to grow enough to meet the needs of her family. As a result, she was forced to work as hired labour on other farms to supplement her income.

And even though she was working extremely hard, on multiple farms, she was still not able to make enough money to provide for the needs of her family.

But all of that changed when she invited to take part in CFM’s new community-led Mafudu Agricultural Project…

The Mafudu Agricultural Project

Many families (like Miremba’s) in the Mafudu community currently survive on one meal or less per day.

These families are mostly subsistence farmers who live in an area that misses out on industry and job opportunities that are available to other, more connected areas of the country.

CFM’s Mafudu Agricultural Project was designed by the local community to empower vulnerable families to improve their yields and food security through improved farming practices, access to more farmland and better-quality seeds. This helps them to feed their families and earn an income.

It’s a new and innovative project, with the first cohort of 78 households (including Miremba’s) recently completing their training and first full harvest cycle and seeing a 37% increase in yields.

Based on this harvest, 88% of these households anticipate they will be able to provide a minimum of 2 meals per day for their family every day in the coming year.

The project has also established Village and Savings Loan Associations (VSLA’s) in the community.

This is empowering households’ to increase their incomes, improve their saving abilities and have hope for a brighter future.

Miremba’s return to hope

As part of the project Miremba underwent training in improved agricultural methods and was given 1 acre of land (which was rented by CFM) for her to farm for the duration of the project.

With her improved skills, better seeds, and more land, and thanks to her continual hard work, in her first harvest cycle as part of the project, Miremba was able to grow enough to feed and support her family!  

Miremba has also joined one of the new Village Savings and Loans group. And as a result of the income she has made during the project, and the ongoing support of her savings group, she will now have enough income for her to pay for the ongoing rent of the 1 acre of farming land for upcoming seasons.

This will enable her to keep feeding her family and generating an income from her farming enterprise.

“The most significant change in my life”, Miremba explains, “is that I will have enough of my own produce and can stop doing casual labour on other people’s farms in order to earn a living.”

“I will now be able to provide for my family without depending on others.”

“Thanks to the support I have received I have gained hope again. I have the belief that I will be able to properly take care of my family’s needs and this makes me so happy.”  

“Thanks to your support I can smile again.”

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