In September 2013, Agrisud organized a learning cycle for the establishment and spreading of agro-ecological systems and practices in Grand Popo, Benin. Today, the same Beninese participants take the initiative of creating the ReBPA (Beninese Network for the Promotion of Agro-ecology), proof of a interesting dynamic arising from the learning cycle!
In South Benin, family farming is subject to many constraints: difficult climate and physical conditions, low levels of productivity of earth and work, limited access to land. In order to cope with those problems, sustainable farming models have to be promoted. They would have to be economically efficient, respectful of the environment, but also supporting a human development and concerned about food security and people’s health. In other words: promote agro-ecology.
Thus, in September 2013, a learning cycle was organized to establish and spread agro-ecological systems and practices in Grand Popo, with the support of the Caritas France Foundation. This cycle gathered 21 participants, 17 of them being Beninese, 2 Togolese and 1 Malian. 6 growers were also associated to the operation, demonstrations were conducted on their lands. The areas’ professional organizations collaborated to this cycle, in particular the Mono and Couffo’s Rice-growers Regional Council and the Commune of Grand Popo’s breeders Network.
At the end of the cycle, Beninese participants decided to create a sharing frame for the enforcement of agro-ecological systems and practices: the ReBPA, Beninese Network for the Promotion of Agro-ecology. Their goal: create a competence network, providing quality support services for the promotion of agro-ecology. But their idea is also to adapt the systems and practices to the Beninese context, to produce teaching tools and techniques, and spread those practices around them. The legal texts are elaborated today and the General Assembly will enable their deposit in Prefecture.
No doubt the Togolese and Malian participants will be interested by this approach and will quickly be able to share with the ReBPA.