Self Help Africa is part of an international development consortium that will launch an ambitious new programme this Spring that will support nearly one million people in Malawi to adapt to climate variability.

The scheme, which has received basket funding support of more than £10m from the United Kingdom Department of Foreign and Overseas Development (DFID), Irish Aid and the Norwegian Embassy in Malawi aims to help more than 900,000 rural people across the Southern African country to cope with and adapt to changing climate.

Self Help Africa is undertaken a programme of activities in Karonga in Northern Malawi as part of the work, which is being undertaken by a consortium that also includes UK based agency Concern-Universal, Italian NGO COOPI, and Irish based charity GOAL.

The project purpose is to help targeted communities to increase household incomes and diversify livelihoods, to increase and diversify smallholder crop and livestock production, and to build the capacity of local communities to sustainably manage their natural resources.

The scheme places particular emphasis on the promotion of sustainable and appropriate agricultural technologies, and will also address the need for disaster risk management practices that can allow communities to cope with climate change and natural disasters that may occur as a consequence, such as drought and flooding.

Implementation work on the DISCOVER project – an acronym for ‘Developing Innovative Solutions with Communities to Overcome Vulnerability through Enhanced Resilience’ starts Northern Malawi in early 2012, following a period of consultation with local communities.

Self Help Africa will collaborate in Karonga with a number of locally based organisations including the Malawian Centre for Environmental Policy and Advocacy (CEPA), and local development partners MALESA, FOCUS, FISD and SLPP.

In addition to the consortium members, CUMO Microfinance Limited is proposed to provide village savings and loans services across all districts.

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