LWR works with local non-governmental organizations (NGOs), farmers´ organizations, community councils and local governments to advance rural development, increase food security, and protect natural resources.
Agriculture Value Chains: Cocoa
In Olancho, LWR has supported Farmer Field Schools, providing farmers with support to initiate cocoa cultivation, and sharing techniques for improving crop quality, and fermentation and drying practices. LWR has helped strengthen farmers´ organizations to improve cocoa collection, processing, and marketing by establishing collection and fermentation facilities and building the capacity of farmers’ organizations to manage these facilities. These efforts have been accompanied by exchanges with Nicaraguan cocoa producers, allowing Honduran farmers to learn new approaches for increasing the value of their cocoa, including organic certification. LWR has facilitated greater direct marketing of cocoa by strengthening regional alliances among producers and establishing contacts with national and international buyers. LWR´s approach emphasizes environmentally sound agriculture practices, including agro-forestry and the use of organic fertilizers.
Food Security: Technical Support and Advocacy
LWR is committed to promoting agricultural systems that increase the incomes and food security of small-scale farmers. In Honduras, LWR´s focus on agriculture value chains is complemented by efforts to help farmers diversify agricultural production, improve on-farm processing and storage, and strengthen local food markets. Responding to the needs of communities affected by increasingly unpredictable weather patterns and historically high levels of hunger, LWR has supported:
- Installation of low-tech, low-cost, low water use irrigation systems, which have enabled farmers to increase their agricultural production by extending the growing season.
- Diversification of vegetable, fruit and grain crops by providing seeds, promoting home gardens, and offering technical support to farmers.
- Construction and community management of grain reserves to ensure local supply and access to grains during low production seasons.
- Increased production of beef, dairy products, chicken, eggs and fish for local consumption.
- Development of a community network for collective marketing of basic grains and other crops.
LWR also works to strengthen local communities’ capacity to advocate for policies that support improved food security.In Southwest Lempira, LWR is helping communities work with and influence Municipal Food Security Committees, which define local food security policies and programs. LWR prioritizes women, small-scale producers and youth in these efforts to advance inclusive decision-making, and help ensure that local knowledge and proposals are incorporated into municipal projects and policies. In this way, best practices and initiatives supported by LWR can be scaled up and institutionalized to increase food security in the region.