You may have seen the official number of COVID-19 cases in Africa is much lower than in Europe or the US. But we don’t want those figures to mislead you – the impact is great. For the millions of farming families in rural Africa, this is far more than a health crisis. This is a socio-economic crisis and we need to treat it like one, else this challenge could have life-threatening impacts for generations to come.
Ripple Effect was created in the spirit of practical solutions to overcoming adversity. Our founding farmers, faced with having to slaughter healthy cattle, were radical – they flew some of their cows to Uganda where they could give vulnerable families the ability to change their lives. Then when the BSE crisis hit in the mid-90s, we had adapted to the challenge – breeding livestock locally and exploring how we could better support families through improved sustainable agriculture farming practices, social development and enterprise.
We are at a juncture once again. The need remains great; but our work must change, and we are committed to supporting and protecting our communities as best we can. Families who have already overcome so much are now facing the extra threat of coronavirus and the economic impacts of lockdown and related limited movement of people and goods. The World Bank predicts that COVD-19 could push another 71 million people into extreme poverty this year alone.
We know farmers who have been forced to sell their animals or land, consume their savings, whose businesses are no longer viable due to travel being restricted and markets closed, and many instances where domestic violence and social problems have sadly increased. We cannot let our farmers – who have worked so hard - fall back to a life of poverty and despair. We must COVID-proof our projects.
We cannot let our farmers – who have worked so hard - fall back to a life of poverty and despair. We must COVID-proof our projects.
“I have helped families stay safe and healthy by demonstrating how to build a tip tap and the importance of washing hands frequently with soap and water.” - Margaret, A volunteer in Kenya