Nkhotakota, September 17, Mana: Irrigation farmers from two Farmer Field Schools (FFSs) in Nkhotakota can now afford a smile after the Evangelical Association of Malawi (EAM) donated solar water pumps to ease irrigation challenges.
The association donated water pumps to Kaula and Pasavute FFSs in traditional authorities Kalimanjira and Mphonde respectively.
Speaking after the handover ceremony, Community Based Facilitator for Kaula FFS, Lucia Samson was all praises to EAM for the donation.
“We used to use buckets and watering cans to irrigate our field, which was labour intensive. This solar pump will now be able to irrigate a large area with ease,” said Samson.
She said the solar water pump was one of the group’s treasured assets and pledged to make better use of it to realise their dream.
“We will make sure we take care of the water pump and make better use of it so that it benefits us and those who will come after,” she said.
Community-Based Facilitator for Pasavute FFS, Chiza Haluma, said the donation came at the right time when the soils were getting dry and that irrigating their banana field became necessary.
“We have many customers for bananas and many others who need the suckers but we couldn’t meet the demand because of irrigation challenges. The coming of the water pump solves our challenges,” she said.
EAM Director of Programs for Central Region, Amos Kalawe, said his organisation under Kulima Better Project decided to make the donation after noting the challenges the group was facing in its irrigation activities.
He said with the solar pump, he expected enhanced productivity in maize and other crops as well as the opening up of an opportunity to grow other crops during the winter season.
Nkhotakota District Commissioner representative, John Manda, hailed EAM for the donation. He said it was in line with Malawi Vision 2063 pillar number one.
“This pillar encourages agricultural productivity and commercialization and that is also contained in our District Development Plans and trickles down to the area and the villages,” he said.
He said Nkhotakota District Council would ensure that farmer groups put the donated equipment to better use through monitoring and extension service activities.
He further asked well wishers to emulate the example by EAM, saying the district has over 800 FFSs in need of similar assistance.
EAM, which is implementing Kulima Better Project in Nkhotakota and Salima districts, bought the two solar water pumps at a cost of K2.6 million.