Voices from the field: Aurea, Tanzania

Farmer Aurea, Tanzania

Aurea Lyamuya is a 52-year-old mother of eight. She lives in Ngage village in the Simanjiro District of the Manyara Region of Tanzania. She relocated there from her homeland in the Kilimanjaro Region due to a lack of water to irrigate her crops.

Aurea used to grow maize, rice and beans, but turned to onion farming after she was introduced to the crop in by farmers from the neighbouring Singida Region.

World Vision and the UN World Food Programme (WFP), with help from villagers, constructed a canal from the Pangani River to supply the village with enough water to provide irrigation for their onion crops.

Despite initial challenges with poor yields and market access for her crop, she says she’s been able to build a house in Moshi city in the Kilimanjaro Region, expand her farm from one to two acres and send her children to school — all with the income generated from onions. She also credits onion farming for the fact that there are no thieves in her area.

She is thankful to World Vision and the WFP for helping build an irrigation system to support local agriculture, and to Farm Radio International for providing information and knowledge exchange through radio, allowing farmers’ questions to be answered.

About the author
Esther Mwangabula is an agricultural journalist who works closely with small-scale farmers in rural Tanzania.  She started working with Farm Radio International in 2008 as a liaison officer for five radio stations as part of the African Farm Radio Research Initiative. Since then, Esther has been supporting FRI’s work in various capacities, including as a mentor for broadcasters in Tanzania. Currently she works as a media and broadcaster liaison officer, working to interview farmers and engage and expand broadcasting partners.

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