Sowing the seeds for better livelihoods

Sowing the seeds for better livelihoods

The programme has provided small-scale farmers with the latest production methods. This has resulted in substantial production increases. Financial support from the EU has also been an important part of the project. With it, farmers have had a chance to become financially independent in the long term. Farmers have, in fact, started contributing to the expenses, gradually replacing the funds from the EU. This was a key aim of the programme!

Mr. Cosimo Lamberti-Fossati, EU Delegation to Sudan Project Manager


Rain-fed farming is of high importance for the majority of Sudanese small farmers to satisfy their staple food requirements and secure livelihoods. The productivity of small rain-fed farming is very low, and yields are often insufficient to satisfy food requirements of rural smallholders. Poor and eroded soils, inappropriate agricultural techniques and very limited use of commercial inputs explain this unsatisfactory situation, which contributes significantly to protracted rural poverty and also provokes disputes over scarce natural resources.


  • To improve food security in the four States of Kassala, Gedaref, Red Sea and the Blue Nile.
  • The project's purpose is to increase the productivity of small rain-fed farming, the predominant farming system in the four states mentioned above and of high importance for the livelihood of many poor rural households.


  • 68 farmers associations were established and registered.
  • 1 500 farmers received loans from CBS and ABS.
  • 8 sacks/farmer of sorghum produced in 2015.


  • 'Agricultural Production by Smallholders' budget is €5 million.
  • Beneficiaries: 3 000 rural smallholders' households in Gedaref, out of 12 000 for the 4 States.
  • Duration: from April 2013 to November 2018.
  • Implementing partners in Gedaref State: ZOA and Zenab NGOs, with a contract amount of €5 million.
  • Total budget for the whole programme is €24 850000 for the 4 States of Kassala, Gedaref, Red Sea and the Blue Nile.


Adam Ahmad Mohamad Harun, Farmer, 55 years old, Mahala village, Gedaref State

"In 2013, I had a complete failure in my crop production. This resulted in me being imprisoned as I was unable to repay money I had borrowed. Despite my release, I felt like my life had reached a point of no return.

"This all changed in 2014 when I became a beneficiary of the project. The results have been incredible, 75 sacks per 5 feddans (roughly 5 acres), the highest production ever seen in my neighbourhood! Such an astonishing harvest allowed me to pay back my debts, cover the basic living expenses of my family, as well as to save some money for the next season.

"For the first time in many years I feel that I will be able to take care of my family and their needs. Other beneficiaries in neighbouring villages have achieved similar results and we are now thinking about forming an association so we are able to continue to use the packages even after the project ends."