In Malawi last year, the number of people facing hunger rose to 2.6 million*, with the global pandemic and lockdowns aggravating an already alarming situation. Changing weather patterns, worsened by deforestation, has caused droughts followed by floods, destroying any hope of a harvest. Hunger is robbing people of their health, potential and in many cases, their lives.
In Malawi, weather patterns that have guided generations of farmers have changed. This is putting everyone at risk - including people like Alaya** (pictures above). She knows of people in her community who have died from starvation. Her family are going hungry for 11 months of the year as there’s just not enough food. Alaya and her husband will often go without, so there’s a little more for the children.
“My worst fear is that my children may die. How can they eat if their mother has no food?” Alaya wondered.
No one should have to live this way.
Alaya has seen the reason for this hunger. “When I was young, the river followed its course to the lake,” she said. “Now, because around the river there are no trees, the river is going into people’s fields, taking all the crops.”
Not being able to farm, people began cutting down trees to sell as firewood – their only option to be able to feed their families. But, this made the problem worse. Tearfund's local partner is teaching families, like Alaya’s, how to farm under these tough, changing conditions.
Training like this is saving lives - in Malawi, South Sudan, Zimbabwe, Burkina Faso, and beyond. Tearfund is equipping farmers with the techniques they need to grow a flourishing harvest in a changing climate. These skills will help them rise out of poverty and hunger - and stay out for good.
With just a small gift, you can make a huge difference in lives like Alaya’s.
$10 a month could provide agriculture training to four farmers in vulnerable communities.
* Malawi Vulnerability Assessment Committee, September 2020
** Name changed to protect identity