Ethiopia is situated in East Africa, and is home to more than 90 million people, with many different ethnic groups, languages and cultures. The population is predominantly rural, and dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods. Vita currently operates in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People's Region (SNNPR).
Our current projects include:
• Irish Aid Sustainable Livelihoods Programme, 2012-Current, (€364,000)
• EU Instrument for Stability no. 1, 2011-2013 (€1,471,565)
• EU Instrument for Stability no. 2, 2012-2014 (€350,000)
• CIP Potato Project, 2013 (€33,175)
• Gates Foundation, Improved Cook Stoves Project, 2013-2014 (€75,768
Vita's impact in Ethiopia includes:
• Direct impact on livelihoods of over 35,000 people
• Food security improved through tripling of potato productivity for thousands of farmers
• First ever hybrid maize seed multiplication by a local farmers cooperative
• Greater potato price stability due to household and cooperative seed storage
• Increased capacity of farmer cooperatives for sustainable seed storage
• Irrigation canals and flumes providing irrigation to over 500 farmers
Vita in Ethiopia:
Vita has been working in Ethiopia since 2005, particularly in the Gamo Gofa Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s Region (SNNPR). The SNNPR is one of the poorest regions of Ethiopia. The majority of the population is based in rural areas, and is heavily reliant on agriculture. Our work includes:
Through educating the population of the effects of poor sanitation practices, and providing the supplies needed to construct sanitation facilities, Vita is committed to Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS)
Increasing Food Access and Incomes:
By supplying small groups of farmers with improved potato seeds and other agricultural inputs, such as fertiliser and extension services, Vita hope to increase households’ access to food and improved incomes. Alongside this, Vita also organises drip-irrigation projects, which save water and fertiliser by dripping them directly on to the roots.
Vegetable seeds are also distributed alongside agricultural inputs and training in order for households to grow vegetables for consumption and sale. Vegetables contain many micronutrients required for a balanced diet. Additionally, they are often sought after in the market, and can help supplement household income.
Promoting Capacity Building and Scalability:
Wherever possible, Vita implements its projects in partnership with local government and community bodies. This approach creates ownership amongst the community, and promotes the long-term sustainability of the project. Ownership and sustainability of projects strongly enhance the likelihood that the project can be scaled up and replicated across the country, increasing the number of people that can be reached by one project.
Supporting Agricultural Research:
By partnering with farmer’s cooperatives, the International Potato Centre (CIP), Wageningen University, Teagasc and others, Vita aims to support research-led seed development. The majority of this agricultural research is taking place in the Ethiopian Potato Centre of Excellence, which Vita helped to establish.