The Dry Corridor is one of the poorest and most economically depressed areas of Honduras. 65% of households live below the poverty line and 48 per cent are extremely poor. They experience high rates of malnutrition and lack access to opportunities for socio-economic development sustainable and adequate public health and education services. Commercial agriculture for export is the main source of temporary employment for the rural poor, while the small number of temporary jobs in rural areas is the main source of income. Subsistence agriculture and family remittances constitute the largest complementary source of income.
The Project is part of the Alianza para el Corredor Seco (Alliance for the Dry Corridor, ACS), the government flagship programme to support interventions for the vulnerable population in a series of contiguous municipalities in a large dry strip of land stretching from Costa Rica to Guatemala. The goal of the project is to reduce poverty and hunger sustainably in the Corredor Seco of Honduras.
The strategic focus concentrates on four strategic pillars:
- Nutrition-sensitive agriculture. The fundamental purpose of the local agriculture is to feed and nourish the population, which is why the project focuses production agriculture as the main source of nutrition through what families harvest and eat, and promotes productive systems that offer access to more varied and nutritious diets.
- Intelligent agriculture with climate change, reforestation, and resilience. Optimizing the productive system of families to generate as much nutrients as possible per orchard or garden. Increasing and diversifying production with high value-added crops in a sustainable manner, sensitive and intelligent to climate change. This is done through technology transfer and training for proper agroforestry management, with an intelligent management of micro-watersheds and with careful and planned diversification of crops.
- Inclusive markets and economic growth. Strategies and business plans are developed according to an analysis of demand for business opportunities in the market, under an inclusive growth approach, pro-poor policies that primarily benefit poor and extremely poor households. The implementation activities enhance the training of agricultural and non-agricultural business people, producer groups (formal or informal) and their integration into existing value chains, as well as the development of those chains with assured market potential.
The project introduces sustainable mechanisms for local socio-economic development, working closely with local stakeholders and existing service and input providers to strengthen their capacities and bring them closer to each other.
- Generation of social capital through local capacities. One of the main mechanism is the generation and strengthening of local capacities from the start of the project. From the collection of socioeconomic data sheets of households and the selection of Health Monitors, the project team works hand in hand and strengthens the capacities of households, youth, local leaders, local and regional authorities, local NGOs, water boards, productive groups, and stakeholders relevant in the gathering of information, analysis and design of solutions. This participatory and capacity-building approach will ensure the transfer of knowledge and skills to all stakeholders. Throughout the process, priority will be given to the participation of all stakeholders, including women and people with special abilities.
Activities focus mainly on:
- Promotion and adoption of nutrition-sensitive agricultural practices
- Consumption of nutritious and diversified food, complemented by education campaigns
- Creating or strengthening inclusive markets through a value chain approach, which provides access, profitability and sustainability to productive activities
- Adoption of intelligent agricultural practices to climate change (intelligent agriculture)
- Increasing production through proper management of natural resources, taking care of the environment, management and preservation of river basins and micro-watersheds
- Gender empowerment to build gender equity; and
- Building up social capital through local production-related capacities
The objective is to lift 6’000 families from extreme poverty, reduce undernutrition by 20% in target communities, and lay the foundation for continued rural growth.
Working in 12 municipalities in two departments (Choluteca and El Paraíso).