Stories & Info
Mama Judith is a small-scale farmer in Migori County, Kenya. For a long time, she relied on maize and bean farming for her livelihood — but eventually, it wasn’t enough to support her five children.
So when she heard about our local savings groups, Judith quickly formed her own and encouraged other women to join. Today, the members not only save for their farm inputs, they also receive additional income from a donkey transport business they invested in.
“Life has eased since we formed the group,” Judith says. “I no longer worry during planting time.” Plus, the women have set a great example in their community — the group has already grown from 18 to 122 members!
In the Ghanaian village that Mumile and Nafissa live in, malaria is a huge problem — especially for mothers like them with young kids. And since the nearest health clinic is over six miles away, preventive measures are extremely valuable.
Thankfully, Mumile and Nafissa were able to learn about the importance of malaria protection during pregnancy, when women and their babies are especially vulnerable to infection. Both women also received mosquito nets for their homes, which dramatically reduced their risk of being bitten.
“I visited the hospital at least six times a year [due to malaria], and it was taking a heavy toll on my finances,” recalls Mumile. But since she got her mosquito net, she hasn’t had to go the hospital once. “I am very happy,” she says.
José Domingo Moreira Blandón is a farmer in Providence, Nicaragua, where he cares for his children and grandchildren. Even though José suffers from arthritis in his knee, he loves working the fields every day — so he was very proud to become a local Agricultural Promoter.
In his three training workshops, José learned about the importance of crop diversification and how to protect the soil — like having live barriers and properly organizing the plots. He’s now growing more than 19 different plant varieties and has established a community nursery, where he shows other farmers how to make compost and use natural pesticides.
Says José, “For me, it is a great opportunity to better my piece of land, have better nutrition results and improve my economy.”
Typhoons are a common occurrence in the Philippines, and the most severe ones can wipe out an entire year’s crop. So after one particularly terrible typhoon hit, the village of San Vicente needed to do something quickly.
With our support, they were able to rehabilitate farms and reduce the risk of future disasters — buying seeds, replacing equipment destroyed by the storm and creating a drainage canal to prevent catastrophic flooding in the future.
They also built new wells — providing the community with more than enough water for bathing, cooking, washing clothes and watering the plants — and protected nearly 8,000 people from waterborne disease.
Word has spread fast about San Vicente’s success, and three other villages have already started similar projects!
Simon Apa is a 39-year-old farmer in Ghana. For years, he struggled to provide for his wife and three children — but, fortunately, that hasn’t been the case since he started raising pigs.
Within five months of receiving the pigs, they had multiplied and were ready to be sold in the market. With this new income, Simon was able to pay back a loan and buy a tricycle (‘motor-king’), which he is now using to transport goods from his farm. He also plans to use it for commercial purposes to earn extra income and pay for his children’s education.
Simon is very grateful for our support. “It has changed my financial situation,” he says. “God bless you all.”
I’m excited to introduce Episcopal Relief & Development’s virtual timeline, featuring key moments in our 75 Years of Healing a Hurting World.