Imagining More in Tanzania
Global hunger is on the rise. In fact, more than a billion people go to bed hungry every night. World Renew’s World Hunger campaign provides a way to help combat this crisis and provide tangible examples of Christ’s love for some of the world’s most in need.
Consider these stories from Tanzania, for example. In many regions of East Africa, drought has robbed farmers of their crops and of their ability to provide for their family’s basic needs. In this environment, it’s becoming more and more challenging to find a way forward.
Mayala and Chausiku
Although they knew it wasn’t a sustainable solution, husband and wife Mayala Nyamonge and Chausiku Mayala used credit to buy food.
“What can you do?” Mayala said about this decision. “You need to eat.”
Supported in part by offerings gathered on World Hunger Sunday, designated as the first Sunday in November, World Renew has been working in Mayala and Chausiku’s community.
Through World Renew, the family joined a local village savings and loan association (VSLA). With the other members of the VSLA they set aside savings every week. No one had very much to add to the savings, but the pool gradually grew, and soon members were able to take out low-interest loans.
Mayala and Chausiku used some of their loan to purchase shoes and pay school fees for their children. Chausiku also used some of the money to start a sardine business. She purchases the fish, fries them, and then sells them locally. This small business is helping to ensure that Mayala and Chausiku do not have to borrow money to feed their family anymore.
With World Renew’s support, the couple also started growing vegetables on a section of their property. Appreciating that the more food his garden produces, the less he has to purchase at the market, Mayala decided he had to find a way to keep pests away. So he invented a way to suspend the plant beds above the ground, making them untouchable by pests. Now his family enjoys more nutritious, vegetable-rich meals.
Mayala and Chausiku are grateful to be more food secure, but they have also gained an additional benefit. With their reduced financial burden, Mayala and Chausiku are experiencing fewer marital tensions. They can now discuss their plans with less stress. They also look to the future with hope, imagining a day when their children are flourishing, they always have enough to eat, and they don’t need to rely on credit. They can imagine more for their family!
Silas and Zena
This year, changing weather patterns have continued to take a toll on farmlands around the world. In addition, the impacts of COVID-19 and the Russia/Ukraine conflict have made the costs of food skyrocket. Many families are struggling just as Mayala and Chausika did before they joined a VSLA.
For these families, giving up on farming is not a solution, so World Renew looks for ways in which farmers can adapt to their changing climate.
Four years ago, increasingly dry weather made it difficult for Silas and Zena Samson to produce even one bag of maize as a farming family – and that bag often fell prey to pests.
Thanks to training from World Renew Tanzania in collaboration with teams from the Tanzanian government and the African Inland Church of Tanzania, Silas and Zena have learned conservation agriculture techniques such as minimum tillage and using ground cover to protect the moisture of the soil. Today they are growing a greater variety of crops to help preserve the soil’s nutrients. They also store their maize in hermetic bags to keep the grain pest-free. These agriculture techniques are also less labor intensive than traditional farming methods.
“Now I have time to devote to being a church elder and leader, for taking more gender training, and for more farm training,” said Silas.
Zena uses her extra time to make bricks for their new home. She and Silas are also giving back. Several farmers from neighboring communities have been coming to them to ask for advice. Silas and Zena are happy to share what they’ve learned, and they take the opportunity to praise God for the knowledge they have gained. In this way they encourage others to have faith in God’s love and abundance.
While global hunger is on the rise, the story of hunger for vulnerable families around the world can be changed just as it has for Mayala, Chausiku, Silas, and Zena. To learn more, visit worldrenew.ca/world-hunger in Canada, or worldrenew.net/world-hunger in the U.S.