Speaking at the launch of the programme, The Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development in Malawi, Dr. George Chaponda said that agriculture and food security are core pillars in the development of the nation. He added that Malawi is capable of producing enough food to feed herself and her neighbors. 

The Thrive programme seeks to promote the adoption of climate resilient practices as well as boost community resilience to shock and emergencies. The programme also seeks to promote economic empowerment by fostering reduction of poverty and deterring unsustainable landscape use. This will be done with a crosscutting theme of an empowered Biblical world view aimed at ‘software’ improvements in behavioral and attitude change. The 5 year programme will be implemented in Nthondo, Nkhoma and Mpamba/Chikwina.

THRIVE Malawi Programme will really add value to the Government’s efforts in reducing food insecurity in the country.
Dr. George Chaponda

While commending the partners present at the launch for their efforts in promoting farming as a business, he urged the people of Malawi to take up value addition and processing as a food security measure. He emphasized that the programme was also paramount in aiding smallholder farmers combat climate change. 

The minister further urged development partners to increase investment in agriculture and food security in Malawi and Africa as a whole. He however cautioned development partners against pushing the agenda of commercializing agriculture too much to the detriment of the small scale peasant farmers without cushioning them from exploitation by their large scale counterparts.

Mr. Stanley Mwangi of Farm Concern International, reiterated that the partners would achieve the set objectives of THRIVE through tested business models in value chain development, market linkages and mitigation to shocks and emergencies as well as financial services innovations.

Indeed, the commercialization of smallholder agriculture through the THRIVE programme is a revolutionary approach that sets in motion the renaissance of the Malawian economy through trade and agricultural development.

The Transforming Household Resilience In Vulnerable Environments (THRIVE) Malawi is a 5-year partnership project that brings together 3 developmental organizations, Farm Concern International (FCI), World Vision Malawi (WVM) and Vision Fund in the implementation that will seeks to address several core areas; move people permanently out of poverty by strengthening livelihoods, disaster preparedness, building adaptive capacity and addressing different areas of market linkages. The goal of THRIVE is to address the multidimensional nature of poverty through an integrated approach that considers all of the core factors underlying vulnerability by:

  • Bringing reliable models that truly transforms smallholder farmers.
  • Contributing  sustainable natural resource management.
  • Building capacity of smallholder farmers and provide innovative ICT solutions through digitized e-extension and mobile phone based e-trading platform
  • Contributing to increased household incomes thereby empowering smallholder farmers
  • Providing alternative livelihood opportunities thereby creating rural employment for women and youth
  • As well as provide reliable, innovative financial solution.

The programme will be implemented in 3 program areas namely; Nthondo, Nkhoma and Mpamba/Chikwina.

FCI Malawi started its operations in 2010 and has received huge support from various arms of the Malawi government and has enjoyed partnership support from World Vision Malawi, Vision Fund Malawi, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) among other organizations.  In addition, FCI has partnered with Bvumbwe research, International Center for Potatoes (CIP), Universal Industries Zomba, Blantyre and Thyolo districts to uplift the lives of thousands of smallholders across Malawi. 

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FCI VISION : To have commercialized smallholder communities with increased incomes for improved, stabilized & sustainable livelihoods in Africa and beyond