Presenting the SeedChange annual impact report for 2020March 16, 2021
In a year of upheaval, SeedChange donors made it possible to keep our work going. Read the SeedChange 2020 annual impact report.
By Jeff de Jong, Director of international programs at SeedChange
There’s no shying away from reality: the past year has thrown cruel and unexpected challenges at farmers all across the globe.
With adversity comes the test: when lost income makes your next meal uncertain, when the seed and food supply chains grind to a halt, what can you rely on?
In the last five years, not a single country in our programs escaped the negative impacts of climate change, natural disasters, and economic, social and political upheaval. And yet, a recurring refrain heard from farmers we work with is “thankfully we have our seeds.”
Seeds might seem small, but small things add up. A diversity of seeds makes each harvest more dependable. Years of good nutrition contribute to good physical health. Learning new skills, like producing compost or bio-pesticides in addition to food, decreases dependence on a single source of income. And strong connections, like those forged in a farmers’ research group or a collective enterprise, help farmers get through hard times, together.
Over the past five years of programming, our data shows these “small things” building up in the communities supported by SeedChange donors. By supporting farmers’ lives and livelihoods through the practice of agroecology—agriculture that puts people and the planet first—we are seeing communities move towards greater health, sustainability and justice.
I’m excited to share our highlights with you in this year’s impact report because they show the transformative power of donors.
- Farms we work with now grow nearly twice as many varieties of fruits and vegetables.
- Women and girls are claiming leadership roles in collective enterprises and farmer research and advocacy groups.
- Communities feel better prepared for climate change, because they can access, breed and adapt their own seeds, ensuring there is food, no matter what.
The model matters. Individual and institutional support for our proven, award-winning Seeds of Survival approach gives communities an edge against the many disturbances that continue to threaten their lives. This work gives me the most hope for our future.
I hope that the SeedChange community shares my pride in the results featured in the SeedChange 2020 annual impact report, because we simply couldn’t have achieved them without this support.
Good health and best wishes,
Jeff de Jong
Director, International Programs
Meet more of the folks who make SeedChange go! Check out our staff page.