23 Jan 2023
The University of Rwanda-College of Agriculture, Animal Sciences and Veterinary Medicine (UR-CAVM) Research Centre for Nutrition and Food Security (RCNFS) in collaboration with National Child Development Agency (NCDA) organized an outreach under the aim of supporting Moringa’s farmers in Kayonza and Kirehe districts, Eastern province.
The purpose of this outreach was to identify reason why Moringa plantation has declined, to teach the community about nutritional and health benefits of Moringa and to utilize Moringa in different dishes through cooking demonstration for the purpose of reducing malnutrition.
During the outreach, different researchers, lectures, students from UR- CAVM and NCDA staff headed to the field where Moringa crops are planted. They met nutritionists, agriculture officers and farmers from the two districts. They also had interviews with some of them and listen their view about Moringa crops.
After interview with the population on Moringa and focus group discussion, UR team headed by Prof. Hilda Vasanthakaalam, the RCNFS coordinator proceed for cooking demonstration at NDEGO sector and NASHO health centre to demonstrate four ways of preparing Moringa as vegetables with traditional Ndagara fish, Moringa pod sauce, Moringa mixed dish and using Moringa leaves in chapatti.
Afterward, agriculture officer and the nutritionist from both Nasho Kirehe sector reminded the population about the benefit of increasing the harvest to feed the family and market. They also encourage citizen to use well prepared Moringa in their daily food which is nutritious to children under 5 years to reduce stunting problem and malnutrition in general.
The population revealed their challenges and what they suggest from the government. The most challenges Moringa farmers face are : lack of enough land to cultivate on, not enough project to support Moringa, lack of Moring seedlings, lack of market for their produce, no document which talk about Moringa crops, lack of training about Moringa crops. After showing their challenges they suggested to have enough land in order to increase production.
At the end, farmers appreciate the knowledge they got from UR researchers and NCDA and promised them to go hand in hand with governments for mobilizing other people to use moringa in their daily lives.
Reported by : Jacqueline UMUPFASONI