Wisely putting rain to work for a greener Africa

Our project is responding to hazards of climate change by putting rain to work in drylands of Sub-saharan Africa through farmer education

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I confirm that I am fully aware of the eligibility criteria, and based on its description, I am eligible to apply to the CSV Prize 2017.

  • Yes, I'm eligible

Preferred language

  • English

Organization name

Rural Africa Water Development Project (RAWDP)

Year founded


Initiative stage

  • Growth (the pilot has already launched and is starting to expand)

Annual budget in 2017 (USD)

  • $250k - $500k

Number of beneficiaries impacted so far

  • 1,000 - 5,000

Organization type

  • Nonprofit, NGO, or citizen sector

Secondary Focus Area

  • Water
  • Rural development
  • Nutrition

Headquarters location: Country

  • Nigeria

Headquarters location: City


Location(s) of impact




Facebook URL


Problem: What problem is this initiative trying to address?

Worsening droughts and erosion are ruining the lives and livelihood of many small holder farmers and has continued to hamper farming activities. Water mismanagement, inappropriate land use, as well as poor knowledge of anti-drought measures by farmers have led to land degradation such as the loss of the soil’s productive capacity to produce food. Also the limited potential for dry season farming through soil and water conservation and the non-employment of rain water harvesting strategies is a challenge.

Solution Summary: What is the proposed solution? What do you see as its most promising aspects for creating shared value?

Our project is bolstering sustainable land management practices, knowledge and coordination in Nigeria using agronomic, vegetative, and structural and management measures that conserves water, control soil degradation and enhances productivity in the field, and the training of local farmers to undertake integrated watershed development based on rainwater harvesting and soil conservation for the regeneration and sustainable management of the local landscape. In doing this, the project builds local capacity for the dissemination of soil and water conservation experiences amongst local farmers. The implementation strategy for the project is basically an interactive learning driven process, which consisted of interactive farm visits; and focus group/farmer discussions sessions etc.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Specify both the social and the environmental impact of your work

Key outputs and impacts of the project hitherto include; i) Establishment of an action forum for at least 250 households and 15 farmer groups to share knowledge on achieving farm land restoration at a greater scale. ii) Assisting 1500 farmers with immediate opportunities to acquire new knowledge on how to improve the productive capacity of their lands. iii) Provision of a participatory platform for the mapping and documentation of 100 – 1000 hectares of land iv) Triggering the adoption of more drought-resistant and erosion-proof agriculture landscape v) Developing and a case study of mapped landscape and best practices in the community vi) Developing a Climate Business Plan to support the community’s climate resilient and low carbon development

Financial sustainability plan: How is this initiative financially supported? How will you ensure its financial sustainability long-term?

We were part of the Global Landscapes Forum at the Conference of Parties (COP21) in Paris, where forest landscape restoration was made a key ingredient of the global movement to adapt to and mitigate climate change because it will help sequester carbon and bring economic benefits to low-income, rural communities. By employing participatory engagement and use of educational activities we enhance capacity of the farmers and develop user-friendly standard tools for sharing and using knowledge. Funding of the activity has largely been providing by farmer cooperatives who pay for this special extension services we provide, in effect, funding is largely earned income.

Unique value proposition: What makes your initiative innovative? How does your project differ from other organizations working in the same field?

The project is unique because it is largely a community –led farmer-driven campaign that triggers and inspires restoration of over 100 -1000 hectares of degraded and deforested landscape using a coterie of agronomic, vegetative, structural and management measures. Our project is a strategic component of Nigeria’s INDCs (Intended Nationally Determined Contributions) “climate-smart” agriculture, where agriculture and land use change are major contributors to Nigeria’s total greenhouse gases (GHG)

Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that sparked the beginning of this initiative.

Our Aha! moment was on discovery that in her Vision 20: 2020, that the Federal Government of Nigeria had laid out ambitious targets for increasing the domestic agricultural production six-fold by 2020. Here output growth would be achieved through reduction in postharvest losses, increased yields, and expansion of cropland. However, the climate change mitigation potential of the agricultural sector within the constraint of meeting these growth targets were never factored in. Also, a Global Environmental Facility (GEF) project Appraisal Document in 2010 estimated five per cent reduction of agricultural GDP from on-farm soil erosion, adding that poverty alleviation and economic growth is dependent on how well land is managed. An elaborate and strategic training of local farmers then became a key component of our work.

Where did you hear about the Nestlé Creating Shared Value Prize?

  • Participated in previous CSV Prize competitions


Join the conversation:


Your idea is not very clear regarding the water source, its quality, and usage of it for agriculture. If it is all human driven, then we may consume lot of time, efforts, and no sustainability. You can use some technology along with human efforts to make it sustainable.

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