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Rain water harvesting tank appreciated by farmers in Igunga District

“Since we started using rain water from our tank, we have never suffered from waterborne diseases contrary to the tap water from our District. This water is safe and clean, and we use it throughout the year for drinking and cooking. May God bless the Igunga Eco-Village project for introducing this technology at our ward” Happily said Rev. Yusuph Shani

Rev. Yusuph Shani (54) is a farmer living at Mwayunge street of Igunga ward located in Igunga District. He is among the 8 local artisans that were trained by the Igunga Eco-Village project in water intervention. The training was conducted in August 2016, whereby the local artisans were trained on construction of small to medium low-cost rooftop rainwater harvesting tanks, siting and construction of shallow wells, pit latrine construction and construction of rope pumps.

According to Rev Shani, the knowledge he acquired from the project is so beneficial to him and has transformed his family’s life. This is because he decided to implement this knowledge at his home whereby he constructed a tank that can collect and store up to 4,000 liters of rain water. The tank’s construction was so cheap for him and he completed this in June 2017 at a cost of 219,000 T. shillings only. This is contrary to two wells that he constructed at his home in the past that costed him over 500,000 T.Shillings each.

Rev. Shani added that he is now assured of getting fresh and clean water from the tank and this has made him and his family to live a comfortable life that is free from waterborne diseases; his family is no longer walking out for fetching water.

“I am now a proud father, my wife and children are no longer going out of the house for fetching water. This has served time and energy spent in fetching water. Not only that they are now enjoying water from the tap installed inside the house” Happily explained Rev. Shani

Rev. Shani filling his bucket with the rain water through a pipe installed within his house

Rev. Shani is also looking forward to using his skills to construct some rain water harvest tanks at his neighbours’ houses and to him this is a business opportunity.

“This knowledge is a business opportunity to me. Four of my neighbours have consulted me to help in construction of rain water harvesting tanks at their homes. Each one of them will pay me a fee of 100,000 T.Shillings. I look forward to using this income in paying my son’s school fees and meeting my family’s basic needs.” Added Rev. Shani.

Rev. Shani is currently in the process of constructing another tank of 100,000 liters capacity. When this is completed, he expects to start selling rain water to his neighbours.

The Igunga Eco- Village has constructed a total of 9 rooftop rain water harvesting tanks in Mbutu and Igunga ward. These tanks were constructed as demo tanks for the farmers to learn and adopt. Currently, a total of 9 farmers have adopted and constructed the rain water harvesting tanks at their homes. This includes 4 at Mbutu ward, 3 at Igunga ward and 2 others at the neighboring wards that are out of the project area.

Kitchen Garden Provides Income and Nutrition in Igunga District

Vivian pausing at her kitchen garden
Establishment of Kitchen gardens at Igunga District has proved to be a source of income and nutrition to farmers at Mbutu and Igunga ward, located in Igunga District.

Vivian Philemon (30) is among the kitchen garden  beneficiaries empowered by the Igunga Eco-Village project. The project constructed a demo Kitchen garden at her household in Mbutu Village in November 28th, 2017; whereby together with other 14 women they were taught on how to construct the kitchen gardens to enhance adoption of this technology by other households in the village.

Vivian explained that she is so grateful to the Igunga Eco-Village project for constructing this kitchen garden at her home and this has been beneficial to her family.

“Thanks to the Igunga Eco-Village project, I am now enjoying some fresh vegetables only at a zero distance from my house. I am no longer worried of getting vegetables. Whether I have money or not, I am assured of eating.

In my Kitchen garden I have planted spinach, chinese, green peppers and pumpkins. Not only we benefit from eating vegetables, but I also sell vegetables to my neighbours and earn money.

From this kitchen garden I have earned a profit of 70,000 T.Shillings through which I have been able to dig a toilet pit. Soon I will complete the construction of a pit latrine at my compound. I will no longer use my neighbour’s toilet. I am so grateful to the Eco- Village project.” Happily, said Vivian.

Vivian is also looking forward to start constructing kitchen gardens at her neighbours’ household. According to her over 5 neighbours have consulted her and they are now collecting the construction materials.

The Igunga Eco- Village project  have introduced the Kitchen gardens at the project area with the objective of increasing food nutrition and security through vegetable production to farmers. A total of 12 kitchen gardens have been constructed at families located in Igunga and Mbutu wards. These were established as demo plots for other farmers to learn and adopt.

The Igunga Eco-Village Project Shares Climate Change Adaptation Technologies to the Regional Consultative Committee Members

Project staff,Vincent Mallya and Goodluck Estomih presenting at the RCC meeting

The Igunga Eco-Village project has participated at the Tabora Regional Consultative Committee (RCC) meeting and reached out to over 120 key Officials for Tabora region with the knowledge on Climate change adaptation technologies. The meeting chaired by the Regional Commissioner for Tabora Region, Hon. Aggrey Mwanri was held on Friday, 2nd March 2018 in Tabora region.

The project was invited to participate at this meeting with the purpose of sharing the work implemented by the project in Igunga District to facilitate spreading of the technologies to other Districts of Tabora Region.

Participants at the RCC meeting listening to the project’s presentation

Among other activities, Tabora’s RCC members learned on the Climate change adaptation technologies implemented by the project in Igunga District including the Push- pull technology, chicken brooder, tree planting, the use of fuel efficient stoves and biogas digesters as well as rope pump and rain water harvesting tanks. Some project publications were also disseminated to the RCC members.

The Parliamentarian for Igunga Constituency, Hon. Dr. Dalali Peter Kafumu who also participated at the meeting thanked the project for the tireless efforts in teaching some climate change adaptation strategies to the residents of Igunga and called upon the Igunga District Council’s support in ensuring sustainability of the technologies after the project end.
“The project is doing a great job at Igunga. I request the Igunga District Council to ensure these good climate change adaptation technologies are sustainable even after the project end. They should have some proper plans to sustain the good work done by this project” Hon. Dr. Kafumu said.

The RCC meeting participants included the Regional Commissioner for Tabora region, the District Commissioners, District Executive Directors, District Administrative Secretaries, Parliamentarians, Religious leaders, Political party leaders, representatives from Non-Governmental Organizations, Private Sectors, Government agencies, journalists and all the key stakeholders for Tabora region.

Parliamentarians Commends Igunga Eco-village efforts in Environmental Conservation.

Parliamentarians together with Heifer International Tanzania’s staff

Tanzanian Parliamentary Committee on Industry, Trade and Environment has commended the Igunga Eco-Village project efforts in environmental conservation at Igunga District of Tanzania.

The praises were given at the project forum with this Parliamentary Committee on Saturday 28th October 2017 in Dodoma Region where a total of 13 Parliamentarians participated.

The forum aimed at sharing with Parliamentarians some climate change adaptation strategies implemented by the project in Igunga district and advocate for policies in favor of the project interventions.

Dr. Lazaro Kapella responding to some questions asked by Parliamentarians

Among other activities, Parliamentarians learned on the Climate change adaptation strategies implemented by the project in Igunga District including the Push- pull technology, chicken brooder, tree planting, the use of fuel efficient stoves and biogas digesters as well as rope pump and rain water harvesting tanks.

A live testimony on how the project has transformed a farmer, Mr. Mathias Luhende’s life attracted all the Parliamentarians while Mr. Luhende was presenting at the forum. He is a farmer living at Makomero Village who has adopted most of the project interventions including the biogas, fuel efficient stove, tree planting, chicken brooder and push pull technologies.

“The Eco-village project has taught me some good agricultural practices that I never knew before; through applying them, I have earned a lot of money that has helped in renovating my house into a modern one. I never thought I could do this before, because my harvests were always poor.” Happily, testified Mr. Luhende.

The Acting Parliamentary Committee on Industry, Trade and Environment Chairman, Dr. Dalali Kafumu, who is also the Parliamentarian for Igunga District thanked the project for the tireless efforts in teaching some climate change adaptation strategies to the residents of Igunga.

The Interim Senior Program Manager for Heifer International Tanzania, Dr. Lazaro Kapella, thanked the Parliamentarians for attending this forum and called upon their support in sharing the climate change adaptation technologies implemented by the Igunga Eco-village project to other parts of Tanzania.

Government officials learn from the Igunga Eco-Village project

Hon. Aggrey Mwanri and the Tabora Region officials observing a tree planted by the Village Natural Resource Management Committee at Mwang’haranga village

“The Igunga Eco-Village project is so unique and I am commending it for the remarkable efforts in fighting against drought in Igunga District. This project is doing a great job in providing the residents of Igunga District with the knowledge on climate change adaptation strategies. I am advising the residents of Igunga District to adapt these good technologies that will mitigate problems caused by drought in the district of Igunga” Said the Regional Commissioner for Tabora Region, Hon Aggrey Mwanri while opening the knowledge sharing and learning forum organized by the Igunga Eco-Village project on September 18th and 19th, 2017.

This was a two days forum organized by the project in collaboration with the Igunga District. The forum aimed at knowledge sharing and learning on the climate change adaptation strategies implemented by the project in Igunga District to facilitate replication of the strategies to other parts of Tabora region. A total of 10 officials from the Tabora Regional Commissioner’s Office participated at the forum. The officers were from the departments of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries development, Community development, Natural Resource Management, Water and Economics.

24 officials from the Igunga District Council, led by the District Commissioner, Hon. John Mwaipopo and the Igunga Eco-village staff were present throughout the visit and shared their experiences in climate change adaptation strategies with the visitors. They also learned from the Regional experts on how to improve implementation of the demonstrated climate change adaptation technologies.

Mr. Emmanuel Nstari switching on the biogas cooker for the visitors to see how it works

Led by the Regional Commissioner for Tabora Region, Hon. Aggrey Mwanri the delegates visited Mbutu ward whereby demonstration on fuel efficient stove, biogas, chicken brooder technology and the Tulip water filter were done by the farmers that have benefited from these innovations. The visitors were impressed and asked questions for clarifications on how the technologies function.

At Mwabakima dispensary, the delegates learned how the rain water harvest tank constructed by the project works and visited the tree nursery planted at Mwang’haranga primary school.

The visitors were also impressed by the Pass on the Gift ceremony that was done at Mbutu ward whereby the Mshikamano chicken husbandry group passed on a total of 69 chickens to 24 members of the Upendo group.

Pass On the Gift ceremony
On his remarks after the Pass on the Gift ceremony Hon. Mwanri explained that he is so impressed by the ceremony and he advised the group members that have received chickens to also pass on the Gift to other farmers to ensure livelihood improvement among all the farmers at the project area.

The Igunga Eco-village project attract visitors at the Farmer’s Day in Tanzania (Nane nane)

The Igunga Eco-Village project in collaboration with the Igunga District Council has joined other stakeholders in commemorating the Farmers Day (Nane nane) in Tabora region. The farmers Day exhibition started from August 1st to August 8th, 2017 whereby the project activities were displayed at the Igunga District Council’s pavilion.

The project used this avenue to educate farmers from other districts of Tabora and Kigoma regions on various climate resilient technologies including the Chicken brooder, fuel efficient stove, vegetable gardening, the use of drip irrigation, tree planting, Eco-sanipan pit latrine, rope pump,the ox-drawn scoop and the Tulip water filter. The technologies were elaborated by farmers from the project area .The farmers also testified how the project has empowered them on those technologies.

See the Nane nane event featured below

The Regional Commissioner for Tabora region, Hon. Aggrey Mwanri being briefed on the Igunga Eco-village’s work by the Communications and Learning Officer, Ms. Mercy Nyanda.

The project Assistant -Agriculture, Ms. Sophia Tesha demonstrating the drip irrigation to visitors.

The Project Manager, Ms. Stella Thomas describing how the Tulip water filter works to visitors at the project booth

Mr. Mathias Luhende, a farmer from Makomero village demonstrating how the chicken brooder technology works to Kigoma’s Regional Commissioner, Hon. E. Maganga (in grey suit).

The Project Assistant- Natural Resource Management, Mr. Joseph Mafuru explaining how the Tulip water filter works to the District Commissioner for Nzega District, Hon. Godfrey Ngupula (in blue suit).

The local artisan, Mr. Benjamin Isaya (in blue cap) from Mgongoro village demonstrating how the rope pump works to visitors .

Visitors at Nane nane ground observing how the fuel-efficient stove works.

The Igunga Eco- Village Project enables learning on climate smart technologies in Tanzania.

The Igunga Eco-Village project is enabling the residents of Tanzania to learn on some climate smart technologies implemented by the project in Igunga District through participation at the Farmers’ Day exhibition marked at Tabora region (August 1- August 8, 2017).
The exhibition was officially opened by the Regional Commissioner for Tabora region, Hon Aggrey Mwanri who also visited the Igunga District Council Pavilion on August 2nd 2017. At the Igunga District Pavilion Hon. Mwanri toured some climate smart interventions displayed by the project and commended the good work done by the project at Igunga district.
Over 400 people have visited the project’s pavilion and learned on the climate smart technologies including the use of fuel efficient stove, chicken brooder technology, the rope pump, vegetable garden, tree nursery, the Eco-sanipan pit latrine and ox-drawn scoop.
Some farmers from the project area are also displaying various crops that have been harvested in 2016/2017 season through using the climate smart farming practices taught by the project. The crops include millet, maize and rice.

The Regional Commissioner for Kigoma, Hon. Maganga(in grey suit) learning on how the brooder technology works.
The project has hosted various VIPs at the pavilion including the Regional Commissioner for Tabora Region, Hon. Aggrey Mwanry, The Regional Commissioner for Kigoma region, Hon. E.E. Maganga, the District Commissioner for Nzega District, Hon.Godfrey Ngupula and the District Commissioner for Urambo District Hon. Angelina Kwinga.

Mr. Kilimanjaro Moves from Cattle Keeping to Fish Farming

“I am among the greatest farmers in Mwanzugi village. I started with one cattle only but I am now a competent fish farmer. My life has really changed into a success and I have become a role model for Mwanzugi village. I currently receive various visitors that come to learn from my successful projects of dairy cattle keeping and fish farming.” Happily explains   Godwin Kilimanjaro.

Godwin Kilimanjaro is a man aged 56 years old. He is married to Sabina John and lives in Masanga street of Mwanzugi village in Igunga district. He adopted the best cattle keeping practices from the group members who were capacitated by Heifer international Tanzania in the skills related to dairy cattle keeping husbandry in November,2009. The skills that he adopted from the group members included cattle’s healthcare, cattle feeding and shed cleanliness.

“One day in May 2010, my brother visited me and informed me that Heifer International was lending some cattle to community members with a condition of paying back one heifer to another farmer. It was a great news to me. I couldn’t resist showing my happiness to him. My brother further instructed me on the basic requirements for the community members like me to get the mentioned heifer and where I should go for getting it.

I followed all the required procedures and I was able to get my first cattle from Songa mbele group that was lending cattle to community members at Mwanzugi village. The group leader further taught me how best I could take care of my cattle. This included cleanliness and cattle feeding. I adhered to all the instructions and my cattle stayed in good health

Adoption of the cattle keeping skills from Songa mbele group that was empowered by Heifer changed my life into the greatest dairy cattle keeper and business man. I started getting up to 15 litres of milk a day while other cattle keepers ended up in getting approximately 8 litres a day. This provided me with sufficient milk for my family’s consumption as well as a business opportunity through which I started selling milk to various people and hotels in Igunga district.” Kilimanjaro explains.



Mr. and Mrs. Kilimanjaro pausing with their cattle

Through the profit he got from the dairy cattle’s project, Mr. Kilimanjaro decided to diversify his business; currently he runs a fish farming project.  Early in 2016, he learnt that there were some groups funded by the Igunga Eco- Village project in Mwanzugi village that deals with fish farming. He decided to visit Jikomboe and Msongela fish farming groups to get skills in fish keeping project.

“Though I learnt a lot of things regarding fish farming from these groups, the group leaders also linked me to Igunga Eco- Village project staff for further capacity building on fish farming. After I had received enough knowledge on the project, in June 2016 using the profit I earned from the dairy cattle’s project, I constructed two modern fish ponds and bought 3, 000 fingerlings. I also bought one motorbike, a refrigerator and renovated my house. My son is also persuing her University degree at the University of Dar es Salaam. He is in his final academic year. I am comfortably providing him with all the school requirements.

One of the Igunga Eco- Village project staff linked me to the District Fisheries officer who further identified a focal person to ensure that I become competent in fish farming. The officer further assigned a focal person to follow up on my project’s progress. The officer taught me on feeding pattern and how I could properly feed my fish.

I am planning to use the profit I earn through fish selling to construct a new house in Igunga town center and I will relocate to Igunga town where I look forward to continue with dairy cattle keeping and fish farming.

I am grateful to Jikomboe and Msongela groups. Their fish farming projects contributed a lot to my inspiration in starting the fish farming project. They are really running their projects in a professional manner.

I am now among the best fish farmers in Mwanzugi village. Many people from Igunga district and even beyond Igunga visit my household to get some skill in fish farming. I also learnt from the groups that I should pass on my skills through which I am now educating my fellow villagers on fish farming project. I believe through this I will be more blessed.” Proudly explains Mr. Kilimanjaro

Heifer’s Igunga Eco Village project has been implementing its activities at Igunga district since April, 2015. Among other activities, the project has capacitated 10 community groups on fish farming project.

The Igunga Eco- Village project is funded by the European Union and implemented by Heifer International Netherlands, Heifer International Tanzania, and Aqua for all, ICIPE and Igunga District Council.






Natural Resource Management Is My Pride- Mr. Luhende


“My engagement and commitment in ensuring Natural Resource Management activities are well observed by people in my village has made me successful. My desire is to see the whole land of Makomero village turns into green and fertile.” Mathias Luhende says.
Mathias Luhende is a man living at Makomero village of Igunga district. He became aware of Heifer International Tanzania’s Igunga Eco-Village activities in September 2015. This was through a village meeting in which the Igunga Eco- village project staff attended and introduced the project to Makomero village residents.
Through this meeting Mr. Luhende realized that the project has entered at Makomero village with the aim of helping the community members to understand the importance of environmental conservation and how they could fight drought in Igunga district.
“At the meeting, the Eco- village staff emphasized that it is important for us to plant trees as this will help in fighting drought in our village. We were also informed that through using agricultural skills that are suitable for dry areas we may increase our farms’ productivity.
I was so inspired and this was an eye opener to me. Prior to this meeting I did not have any knowledge regarding the importance of environmental conservation and what to be done to support it. So, I said to myself that I must do a great job to fight drought in Mwanzugi village.” Said Mr. Luhende.
Following the village meeting, Makomero village formed a Natural Resource Management group called Chapakazi whereby Mr. Luhende was elected to be the chairperson. The group started with 16 members and to date it has 25 members (8 Female and 17 male).
Mr. Luhende decided to offer ¼ acre of his land for the group to start Farmers Field School. The group was then provided with rice seeds by Heifer International and they planted the seeds in their group farm. The group was further instructed by the trained facilitators on how to use good agricultural skills including the use of improved seeds, timely seed sowing and harvesting, use of manure and appropriate spacing. The harvests were good and they harvested 10 sacks of rice.
Mr. Luhende was inspired by the training he received and so he decided to apply the skills into his personal rice farm where he planted 1 acre of rice.
“Contrary to the previous years where I used to harvest a maximum of 10 sacks, in early 2016 my farm yielded 40 sacks of rice. I sold all the rice sacks and earned 2,250,000 Tanzanian Shillings.
Thanks to Heifer International Tanzania that I was able to renovate my house to a modern standard using the funds I earned through selling rice. Without the skills, I wouldn’t have harvested such a huge amount of rice.” Proudly explained Mr. Luhende.
Through Heifer International Tanzania’s Igunga Eco Village project, Mr. Luhende also learned the importance of planting trees that includes reduction of soil erosion and prevention of desertification. He therefore planted 200 trees at his compound and sensitized his neighbours to plant some trees. A total of 378 trees have been planted by his neighbours at their house compounds.

“I am looking forward into seeing Makomero village turning green. I am making efforts to ensure that the whole village has this good knowledge on environmental conservation. This is done through presentations during village meetings and I sometimes do home visits” Mr. Luhende added.
To avoid unnecessary cutting of trees, Mr. Luhende also has installed a fuel-efficient stove on his house. He learned it from the artisans that were trained by Igunga Eco Village project. The artisans are hired by the villagers to make these stoves and they do it at a minimum cost of 10,000 shillings only.
“Makomero village has a total of 5 trained artisans, so I hired one of them to help in constructing this useful fuel efficient stove. Thanks to the Eco village project, my wife is now enjoying using this good stove. It gives out enough flame and it is fast in cooking food.” Happily, explains Mr. Luhende
Mr. Luhende explained that he is looking forward to contribute to trees conservation at his village as this stove uses a small number of fire woods compared to other stoves.
On seeing the good job done by Mr. Luhende in Makomero village including trees’ planting and passing on the knowledge to other community members, the Igunga Eco- village project offered him with a solar panel and now he is enjoying the solar power.
“Thanks to Heifer International Tanzania, I now have a modern house that I constructed using the profit I got from my rice farm, and my house is full of light during nights. I am similar to those people living in town.” Proudly explains Mr. Luhende.

Tanzanian Government Leader Join Hands Heifer International Tanzania to Curb Drought in Igunga District.

Hon. John Mwaipopo in his office

The District Commissioner for Igunga District located in Tabora region, Tanzania, Hon. John Mwaipopo has joined hands the Igunga Eco-village efforts in fighting against drought at Igunga district through championing the tree planting campaign in the district. The project is implemented in 9 villages located at Igunga and Mbutu wards of the district.

Igunga is among the driest districts in Tanzania, with 500-750 mm annual rainfall and 6 months of dry period. Most of the people in Igunga rural depend on agriculture and/or livestock production for their food and income. Over the past few years they have increasingly been affected by climate change associated problems. This includes prolonged drought, floods, soil degradation and deforestation.

Among other activities implemented by the Igunga Eco- village project, tree planting has been prioritized and the project has formed 21 Natural Resource Management (NRM) committees in the project area. The committees oversee community mobilization in tree planting and management. These Committees are also responsible for overseeing environmental management issues in their respective villages.

Joining hands the project activities from January 1st, 2017 to date, Hon. Mwaipopo has planted a total of 12 trees in various location of Igunga district where Heifer International Tanzania implements its Eco- Village project. This includes Mwanzugi and Mwabakima villages located in Igunga and Mbutu wards respectively.

Speaking at his office in Igunga District, Hon. Mwaipopo commended the Igunga Eco- Village project efforts in mitigating climate changes’ impact in the district and promised support to Heifer International Tanzania in implementing the project in his district.

Hon. John Mwaipopo planting a tree at Mwanzugi Primary school.

“I intend to make drought a history in Igunga and hence I have been leading the tree planting campaign in my district. I believe that through leading by example, the community members   will be sensitized to copy what I am doing and will plant some trees at their compounds. Eventually, Igunga will turn into green!” Proudly explained Hon. Mwaipopo.

The Igunga Eco- Village project is funded by the European Union and implemented by Heifer International Netherlands, Heifer International Tanzania, ICIPE, Aqua for all and Igunga District Council.