UNDP-GEF Project Impacts Over 900,000 Beneficiaries in 7 States

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Ene Okwanihe, Abuja

The United Nations Development Programme/Global Environmental Facility (UNDP-GEF), Fostering Sustainability and Resilience for Food Security in the Savannah zones of Northern Nigeria (RFS) has ended with over 900,000 Nigerians benefiting from the project in 7 states in Northern Nigeria.

The project which ran for 5 years 2018-2022, was funded by the UNDP-GEF and implemented by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in Nigeria Katsina, Kano, Jigawa, Adamawa, Benue, Gombe and Nassarawa states.

The goal of the UNDP-GEF-IAP-RFS was to enhance long-term sustainability and resilience of food production systems in Nigeria, building greater community resilience to climate risks and other shocks that drive food security.

It worked to support rural smallholder who struggle with climate vulnerabilities and changes in temperature, rainfall, it also aimed to increase overall annual crop production, increase farmers income, provide employment across value chains and generate wealth in rural communities.

Speaking at the close out ceremony of the project, which held in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital citythe Deputy Resident Representative UNDP Nigeria Country Office Mr. Lealem Berhanu Dinku said climate change poses great challenges in recent times especially as it affects the economy.

According to Dinku, the dangers of climate change was what prompted the implementation of the Resilience for Food Security in the Savannah zones of Northern Nigeria (RFS).

“the effects of climate change are phenomenal and widespread in our country starting from persistent droughts, extreme heat, erratic rain patterns, just to mention a few. In recognition of the immense challenges ahead of us, it has therefore prompted Federal Government and GEF, to respond to these challenges by developing the regional project for which we have implemented over 5 years. Mr. Dinku disclosed that the project was able to create over 900,000 direct and indirect jobs in 5 years. Under this project, great results has achieved so far in tackling food insecurity in Nigeria”

More than 90,000 direct jobs and 800, 000 indirect jobs has been created through various livelihood and income generating activities.

He added that more than 50,000 women were empowered through the project’s climate-smart agriculture and livelihood intervention with both on-farm and off-farm income generating activities while noting that 100 hectares of degraded and soil. erosion land has been restored.

Dinku commended the Nigerian government for their commitment to the project through the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

The United Nations Development Programme/Global Environmental Facility (UNDP-GEF), Fostering Sustainability and Resilience for Food Security in the Savannah zones of Northern Nigeria (RFS) is a regional project and is being implemented in 12 African countries which Nigeria is one of.

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