CREATE Sierra Leone

Country: Sierra Leone
Project details
Services:
Access to finance
Capacity building
Climate-smart agriculture
Enterprise development
Value chain development
Crops:
Cereals
Households reached:
16000

Community Revenue Enhancement Through Agricultural Technology Extension (CREATE), 2013-2019

Donors: Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, HEINEKEN International

Partners: Sierra Leone Brewery Limited, Sierra Leone Agricultural Research Institute (SLARI), Finance Salone, Genesis Farms

Goal

To reduce poverty in Sierra Leone through increasing agricultural capacity in rural households and limiting the dependency of imported commodities. The project aims to rebuild agricultural production and increase food security by linking smallholder farmers to urban markets, restoring essential social services, and rebuilding local community cohesion and infrastructure.

What we do

EUCORD is partnering with HEINEKEN International and its subsidiary Sierra Leone Brewery Limited (SLBL) to assist with the implementation of the Community Revenue Enhancement through Agricultural Technology Extension project otherwise known as CREATE. Support by the Ministry is used to (a) integrate groups of smallholder farmers into SLBL’s supply chain, and (b) train these farming families in good agricultural practices. This will not only help substitute imported raw materials by local ones (thereby saving scarce foreign exchange resources) but also help establish local supply chains which will transfer purchasing power from the urban middle class to the rural poor.

To allow CREATE to play a significant role in Sierra Leone’s economic recovery following the end of the Ebola virus epidemic, the project was relaunched in December 2015 to re-establish momentum and extended until December 2019 to give sufficient time for its interventions to become sustainably embedded in the country

Accomplishments

The project is stepping up efforts to increase per hectare yield through the introduction of improved agronomic practices and the testing of new sorghum varieties. This is done in collaboration with the Sierra Leone Agriculture Research Institute (SLARI), which is conducting on-farm trials to test both exotic and local sorghum varieties.

In 2018, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) identified sorghum as one of its national priority crops and installed a Sorghum Desk Officer. At District level, collaboration between CREATE’s project team and District Agriculture offices started (e.g. Kono and Port Loko), e.g. on seed distribution, demonstrations and monitoring of sorghum farms.

In 2018 the project distributed 20 tons of seed (local white variety) planted on 2,678 hectares involving 5,091 smallholder farmers. Training on business development was also completed involving 25 nucleus farmers or their representatives. In 2018/19, demonstrations were conducted on Katic, a purified local sorghum variety developed by Sierra Leone Agricultural Research Institute (SLARI). Its yield potential grown as mixed crop is 500 kg/ha and 1,200 kg/ha grown as sole crop.