Persons with disabilities seek to excel in farming

Persons with disabilities seek to excel in farming

A GROUP of vegetable growers mainly formed by persons with disabilities in Mvomero District, Morogoro region has appealed to the government and stakeholders to help them find land to proceed with farming activities.

Under the group called TEVANE, the group seeks to raise income and improve their living conditions but are facing acute shortage of land to conduct agriculture activities.

Currently, they have rented an hectare of land to conduct their farming activities and the land owner is willing to sell for 2m/-.

Unfortunately, the group is crippled due to insufficient funds to buy the land. Speaking to the Daily News, Secretary of TEVANE group, Ms Christina Aloyce said after the farming project that started as demonstration engaging in organic vegetable farming they raised money and hired a plot to proceed with the activity.

“We started the project in August 2021 with 11 people, establishing vegetable gardens...we developed a short-term agricultural work plan to enable us generate income,” she said.

Ms Aloyce further applauded the Local Government Authorities for providing them with a loan amounting to 2.4m/-, which helped them during establishment of a project.

She said they have been cultivating different types of vegetables after the Morogoro based Sustainable Agriculture Tanzania (SAT) provided them with agriculture equipment and training on organic farming skills.

Mvomero Ward Agricultural Officer, Mr Erasmus Lupenza said the ward has a total of 8012 farmers engaging in cultivating various crops.

They have been advising farmers to join into groups to have access to training and loans so as to improve their agricultural activities. SAT representative, Mr Rashid Mallya said their objective is to transform farming practices in Tanzania, through proper knowledge dissemination, including building the capacity of farmers so that they can effectively participate in the value chain production.

“We are collaborating with relevant partners in the public and private sector in order to strengthen the farmers’ capacity in agro ecology,” he said.

In 2020, they worked with 21086 farmers out of which, 65 per cent were women. About 1339 people attended 41 different courses at their farmer training center in 2020. Over 857 organic certified farmers cultivated 848 acres of land, while a total of 72 farmers participated in research activities with 13 university student researchers.

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