The initiative aimed to increase food security of vulnerable populations and regions of Guinea-Bissau. Through the Decentralised Programme for Food Security and Nutrition (PDSA / GB), IMVF helped over 23,000 people, operating in 247 villages.
When in 2007-2008 there was a general increase in food prices Guinea-Bissau was particularly vulnerable. In response, IMVF, with co-financing from the European Union, began the PDSA-GB. An initiative with national coverage for 2 years joined together IMVF, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Guinea-Bissau (MADR) and 9 Civil Society Organisations in order to increase access, availability and stable use of agricultural food for the most vulnerable communities.
At the closing conference, which took place on October the 28th in Bissau, the investment made was presented: over 100 tons of seeds – especially rice – were purchased and distributed. Also distributed were agricultural tools, rehabilitated more than 2000 hectares of bolanhas (rice paddies), 34 community gardens were created and 26 wells opened, in addition to the acquisition and distribution of rice, maize and cassava mills, as well as the installation of oil palm presses for agricultural processing. We emphasize the creation of a database with the record of initiatives in the country in the area of food security, including georeferencing, in a partnership between IMVF, FAO and MADR.
The return is already visible. In a country where 33% of the population lives on less than $ 1 a day, suffering from chronic food insecurity due to lack of means of production, processing and storage, the intervention of the PDSA-GB reached 247 tabancas (villages) in various regions of Guinea, directly benefiting more than 23,000 people.
An effort now recognized by the European Union, that will continue to support the initiative by funding a second phase of the PDSA, with the aim of profiting from the work already done to ensure self-sufficiency and effectiveness of the work of local organisations in this region.
The PDSA also included a training component via radio – the Agricultural School of PDSA – a place to disseminate information and answer questions. Already broadcast by nine community radio stations, in 10 languages, the program will continue in this second stage, which begins now and will end in 2013.
One of the priorities of PDSA has been to promote women?s access to knowledge, inputs and technologies on activities which are traditionally connected to them: gardening, milling, shelling, palm oil production, trading and productive activities in general.