Taking land restoration efforts in the Sahel to greater heights

Bamako, Mali, 26 February 2019— The third in the series of “Beating Famine” Conferences kicks off today.  Focus of the conference has shifted from building awareness of Farmer-Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR) and EverGreen Agriculture practices, to taking proven successes to massive scale.

‘Beating Famine brings together multiple organizations and efforts into a more impactful movement,’ said Dr Dennis Garrity of the EverGreening Global Alliance. ‘Through this conference, we seek to draw attention to and generate support for the African Forest Landscapes Restoration Initiative (AFR100) and its goal of restoring 100 million hectares, as well as the Great Green Wall for the Sahara and the Sahel Initiative, the UN Action Plan for the Sahel.’

The conference builds on the efforts and successes of key programmes in the region such as World Vision and Groundswell International’s ‘Eco Agriculture in the African Sahel’ project in Mali, Burkina Faso and Ghana and the EC-funded ‘EverGreen Agriculture Project’, the EC-AU-FAO supported Action Against Desertification project in support of the Great Green Wall and the Building resilience in Africa Drylands’ implemented by FAO with partners.

400 participants from across the Sahel, along with financial and technical partners and representatives of governments, research institutions, community-based organizations, and civil society will come together to share, learn, plan and accelerate the regreening and restoration movement for food security and nutrition in Africa.

“Farmer-managed natural regeneration is a simple and low-cost method of land restoration that is easily combined with other agricultural methods, said Tony Rinaudo, winner of the Alternative Nobel Prize, the Right Livelihood Award. “Five million hectares of land have been restored in Niger using this technique. 22 other countries in Africa have adopted farmer-managed natural regeneration, demonstrating the potential to restore millions of hectares of land on the continent.”

Beating Famine will include an award ceremony to recognize the achievements of individuals, communities, organizations and governments in land restoration in the Sahel region. The awards will not only recognize successes in restoration and regreening, but also efforts to share successes to support its spread and scaling-up. These achievements could be through training, mentoring, innovations to better meet communities’ needs, exceptional project design and implementation, or policy reforms that have contributed to regreening practices, scaling for the region, and beyond.

Beating Famine 2019 is organized by World Vision, World Agroforestry, EverGreening Global Alliance and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). World Vision and the World Agroforestry Centre have worked together, with the support of numerous collaborating organisations, to host Beating Famine conferences in Nairobi, Kenya in April 2012, and in Lilongwe, Malawi in April 2015.

Media Enquiries

  • Samuel Baafi, Communications Manager, World Vision; Samuel_Baafi@wvi.org; +223 61 427907
  • Susan Onyango, Global Communications Coordinator, World Agroforestry; s.onyango@cgiar.org;
  • Daisy Leoncio, Senior Communication Officer, FAO Regional Office for Africa; daisy.leoncio@fao.org; +233 558 196156

About World Vision

World Vision is an international partnership of Christians, working in over 100 countries around the world, whose mission is to follow our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in working with the poor and oppressed to promote human transformation, seek justice, and bear witness to the good news of the Kingdom of God.

About World Agroforestry

World Agroforestry (ICRAF) is a centre of science and development excellence that harnesses the benefits of trees for people and the environment. Leveraging the world’s largest repository of agroforestry science and information, we develop knowledge practices, from farmers’ fields to the global sphere, to ensure food security and environmental sustainability. Headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, ICRAF operates six regional programmes in Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and Latin America and conducts research in more than 30 other countries around the developing world.

About FAO

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger. FAO's goal is to achieve food security for all and make sure that people have regular access to enough high-quality food to lead active, healthy lives. With over 194 member states, FAO works in over 130 countries worldwide.