Browse by Theme: Food Security

Livestock is the main household asset and a key productive resource for pastoralist communitiesliving in the border areas of Kenya and Ethiopia. However, recurrent droughts are eroding pastoralists’ livestock base and weakening their livelihoods and their resilience to climatic shocks.

Livestock marketing, understood as the process through which live animals change ownership, is increasingly perceived as critical for improving pastoral household income. Efforts aimed at addressing constraints to the development of efficient and vibrant livestock marketing activities in the region are increasingly seen as a meaningful way of reducing pastoralists’ vulnerability to drought.

This baseline study, commissioned by CARE International, identifies structural issues behind livestock marketing in Mandera Central and West in Kenya and the Borana zone in Ethiopia. The study also aims to provide potential entry points for action to improve livestock marketing in the region.

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A Publication of the Oakland Institute & the UK Hunger Alliance.

High food prices in 2007-2008 threatened the livelihoods and food security of billions of people worldwide for whom getting enough food to eat was already a daily struggle. All over the world, individuals, civil society groups, governments and international organizations took action to cope with the crisis triggered by skyrocketing food prices.

This report investigates whether these responses were appropriate and effective and whether high food prices have brought about any changes in food and agriculture policies. Whereas price volatility remains a threat for the world’s poor, the intention of this report is to draw key lessons from these responses in order to inform future policies and programmes.

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Coastal communities in Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu in southeastern India suffered lasting effects in the wake of the 2004 tsunami, when more than 2,800 hectares of land were rendered unproductive and more than 6,000 traditional fishing boats were destroyed. The ramifications of the tsunami’s destruction were particularly devastating for women in coastal areas engaged in backwater fishing. Women from scheduled caste fishing communities faced a strong gender bias before the disaster, which restricted their participation in the fishing value chain to post-catch processing. This innovation brief talks about CARE's success in using market-based interventions to develop the crab value chain in traditional fishing communities which provided new employment opportunities in the crab farming sector, increased incomes and food security, and empowered highly marginalized women.

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There is a strong two-way relationship between food insecurity and the HIV and AIDS epidemic.

Homestead gardening can help to break the connection. It offers a wider range of potential crops than field-based agriculture, requires less time and labour and can provide a source of extra income.

Mainstreaming HIV and AIDS concerns into agricultural programs also helps reduce stigma and build partnerships with other organizations.

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May 21, 2007 – Brussels, CARE held a second roundtable meeting in cooperation with WFP and UNAIDS to discuss the links between food insecurity and HIV and AIDS.

Practitioners from Rwanda, Ethiopia and Zambia shared experiences in HIV and food security programming and provided tools for policy makers and programmers in Europe.

In 2007, we are one year into the “scale up” to universal access to HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment, care, and support, and as we approach the half way point to the Millennium Development Goals, it is an appropriate time to take stock of a comprehensive approach.

This second roundtable builds on last year’s discussion, which brought together high-level representation from the European Commission, relevant UN agencies, the European Parliament and the NGO community to share ideas about how to create greater linkages in this area and optimise the impact of existing interventions.

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Pastoral communities in the Borana and Shinile zones of Ethiopia have been changing and adapting their livelihoods to changing environmental conditions for centuries. Recurrent droughts have been a major issue throughout history in the Ethiopian lowlands, and strategies to cope with, and adapt to these droughts are embedded in communities’ traditional social structures and resource management systems.

Despite the sense of determination, pastoralists’ ability to adapt is constrained by many factors including increasing land degradation; conflicts over scarce resources, which limit movement and destroy assets that are key for adaptation (especially in Borana); limited access to information (including that on weather, climate change, markets, as well as pest and disease outbreaks); limited education, skills and access to financial services and markets required to diversify their livelihoods; inadequate government policies, capacities and coordination; demographic pressures; and social and gender inequalities and marginalization, which reduce the voice and adaptive capacity of the most vulnerable.

Enhancing the adaptive capacity of pastoralists will require community-based and community-led interventions, but will also require tailored support from NGOs, donors, and governments and this study explores the issues and options facing all stakeholders.

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This review recognises that addressing pastoralists’ political marginalisation, adopting appropriate cross-border approaches and improving donors’ policies to drought management is only part of broader efforts to address pastoralists’ vulnerability in the Horn of Africa (HoA), which may include efforts to improve access to markets, support viable economic alternatives, enable sustainable resource management to arrest or limit environmental degradation and so on. However, for the purpose of this analysis, this review is limited to the literature that discusses the above three key focus areas in relation to pastoralists’ vulnerability. In addition, this review recognises that pastoralists are a highly diversified group with widely different needs, backgrounds and levels of vulnerability. While there are pastoralists who are relatively wealthy and still able to profitably engage in pastoralism, in recent years an increasing number of pastoralist groups across the HoA have been confronted with a series of livelihoods shocks and have suffered from the progressive weakening of their livelihood systems and increased levels of vulnerability and food insecurity.

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