Since April 2015, over 9,500 people have directly benefited (and over 42,000 people have indirectly benefited) from Tearfund's project with local partner, Ministry of Hope, which aims to reduce poverty and extreme hunger for communities in Dowa District, Malawi.
By implementing agricultural techniques learned in training, households have seen their harvest of maize and groundnuts increase almost five-fold, giving them not only enough food to feed themselves and their families, but they also have food left over to sell for additional income.
By the third year of the project, food security had increased in the project area and 45% of people could afford to eat at least 3 meals a day during the lead period (pre-harvest), up from 17% at the start of the project.
People in this community have also been participating in self help groups which have allowed them to access loans to start new businesses or expand existing ones allowing them to diversify their livelihoods, giving them more resilience for difficult times.
As well as reporting increased incomes, members also reported that social cohesion has improved as a result of community members participating in self-help groups, saying that it has led them to support each other more and to look out for vulnerable people in their communities.
Environmental conservation has been an important element of the project and over 8,800 farmers have been trained in natural resources management, planting over 1.3m trees.