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Maize mill

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Mbewa Self-Help Project (UK)

Further details

Food Security Project

The Project Committee reported in January 2010 that the long rains had not arrived, meaning the maize that had been planted was dying.

It is unusual for the rains to fail in Mulanje District as the mountain seems to attract it, but much of the south of Malawi and neighbouring countries have been affected. IPS News has carried a report on the drought (click here).

 

Dry maize

Much of the maize crop has been lost. Mike Brady sent a donation of £200 to set up a food security fund, which was used to buy 13 x 50 kg bags of maize flour for the most vulnerable (30 old people and 35 orphans). The building constructed by the villagers to house the maize mill was used for the distribution.

The rains arrived late February and villagers were advised to plant potatoes and cassava by Jones, the agricultural advisor employed by the project, which could produce a crop in the limited time left.

Once the maize mill is operational, money will be paid back to the food security fund for the maize so that it will be available should a similar situation arise.

The dry spell has presented an opportunity as it has meant the project committee has been able to proceed with raising and improving the dam used to feed the irrigation scheme and create a reservoir of water. This has been in the plans for a while - Jones, the agricultural advisor can be seen explaining the need in the clip on the front page.

 

Maize distribution

The project provided a loan for cement and for a skilled foreman to supervise the work. Villagers gathered the rocks and river sand required and provided the labour.

Dam project
Dam Project

Pictures of the dam being built can be seen in the 'fish and irrigation' section.

Village meetings have developed other food security projects, which will be funded once the maize mill is operating.

 

 

 

 

The Mbewa Self-Help Project (UK) raises funds for projects in Mbewa Village, Malawi.