The programme FAR is financed by the Swedish Embassy and implemented by Swisscontact in collaboration with several implementing organizations (IO’s). The team has outlined actions to take during and after the emergency, as well as in the reactivation phase (medium- and long-term vision). It is important to highlight that programmes like FAR that deal with food security issues are highly relevant in such a period of crisis. Through the Implementing Organizations, which have a strong presence in the territory, the programme can react timely to mitigate the multiple effects on food production and adapt according to the needs that arise. David Beasley, Executive Director of the World Food Programme (WFP), has warned of the upcoming disastrous situation: “We are on the verge of a ‘malnutrition pandemic’. The number of people suffering from severe hunger could double by the end of the year to over 250 million people...”. No one knows who will take care of the field if crops will be lost and if food will be lacking. The priority objective of the FAR programme is to improve food security and resilience through climate adaptation and resilience in Mozambique. This objective is ever more valid in the face of this new reality.
Support farmers to continue productionThe aim is that producers continue their activities, for example, in the case of growing vegetables. They are enabled to do so with direct as well as indirect support from the IO’s via the lead farmers, local field facilitators and the agrodealers. The work done with the agrodealers during the first two years of the programme will enable the lead farmers to continue agricultural production by means of temporary guidance via WhatsApp, telephone, sending brochures and guides. Educating farming communities in rural areas on COVID-19 measures is critical. The existing agriculture technology transfer initiatives can be easily used as a platform to promote such measures – i.e., combining health and agriculture messages effectively. This would further allow food-insecure countries such as Mozambique to continue “business as usual”, without interrupting their farming operations and comply with measures to avoid the spread of COVID-19 among their communities.