The 3rd Project Research and Learning Workshop was conducted on December 20, 2018, at Save the Children Country Office in Addis Ababa. The workshop was organized by the Tufts University team under Growth through Nutrition Activity. The workshop serves as a platform for experts in research, learning, and knowledge management in the Nutrition, WASH, Health, and Agriculture sectors to share knowledge and learning.
Project heads and experts from relevant fields and organizations attended the event to review the group’s plans for the future as well as sharing learning from the recent Seasonal Calendar study conducted by the Land O’Lakes team. Dr. Yigzaw Dessalegn, Agronomy Advisor at Land O’Lakes presented findings from the study conducted in 2018 amongst beneficiaries of the nationwide Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP) and the Agricultural Growth Program (AGP) in 18 sample woredas from Growth through Nutrition project implementation areas.
The study aimed to identify and assess production and rainfall calendars, availability and usage of land resources, and the type of livestock resources in various agro-ecologies of the targeted woredas. In doing so, the study was able to distinguish the type of food crops consumed and develop seasonal availability and consumption calendars for different agro-ecologies. The resultant calendar thus allows users to identify periods of the year when households face difficulty to fulfill their food requirements and to understand the sources of food in different months of the year and thus better support the attainment of positive nutrition outcomes.
The study found that the Most Vulnerable Households (MVHH’s) constrained access to land resources limits their ability to produce and consume diversified and nutritious diet. The study also indicated that crop production calendar varied among sample woredas even when they are located within the same agro ecological zones. By introducing crop variety and cropping practice that takes into consideration the length of rainy season and utilizing post-harvest technologies, the study concludes that there is an opportunity to produce & supply food throughout the year in the project intervention areas.
Participants discussed the findings and provided feedback for further refinement of the draft document. Suggestions were raised around the possibility of employing interventions to increase awareness of farming practices that allow for the effective utilization of land despite MVHH’s limited land resources. The finalized version of the study report is expected to be released in the coming weeks.