Water from forests and fertile soils enables farmers to increase their crop production and yield from their files. The available food becomes wider and more diverse. Vegetables, fruits, milk, eggs and honey contribute significantly to a healthier diet, even during the dry season.
Most areas in Ethiopia enable the cultivation of vegetables or food during and after the 3 to 4 month rainy season, crops that have always provided the nutritional basis for the population. As an example, the teff – a type of millet that is only cultivated in East Africa. Teff flour is a basis for the ethiopian flat bread “injera”. Likewise, the Enset, also called false banana is a basis for the “Kocho” flat bread.
Forests are improving the water balance and thus contribute a lot to the improvement of food, especially through the second crop rotation and the cultivation of fruit trees and vegetables. Furthermore, forests have many other positive influences on the food and the nutrition of people and animals:
By improving the water balance, the soil quality and the land reclamation, forests directly contribute to a diverse a diverse and healthy diet. Healthy people are strong people who take control of their lifes.
As healthy diet is strongly linked with forests and effective natural cycles, we implement food security projects as subsequent projects together with groups of small holders after a successful reforestation. In addition to vegetable cultivation and fruit trees plantation (see water projects), we also attach importance to beekeeping with honey production. Beekeeping is typically carried out by groups of landless people, namely young farmers who do not inherit any land from their parents because the parents do not have enough land to distribute it among the children (and therefore only the eldest get a piece of land, the youngest remain landless and thus without perspectives).
In many project areas, a variety of projects and initiatives have developed themselves, depending on local conditions and possibilities. It is a great pleasure for us to see during our visits how much can develop from trees and forests, and with how much joy farmers, women and youth invite us to share their success.