Small-scale farmers in Malawi often have just a little land on which to grow their food. Longer-lasting periods of drought and more frequent unstable rainfall have led to new challenges for the farmers. The Development Fund has, since we started work in Malawi in 2006, made a special effort to increase the capacity of small-scale farmers to adapt to climate changes, and thus to increase the food and nourishment security of the country as a whole.

Key Facts

- Capital: Lilongwe
- Population: 18 million
- HDI: Ethiopia occupies the 174th place, with a score of 0.499 on the UN’s Gender Inequality Index (in comparison, Norway has a score of 0.053)*

*UNDP Human Development Report 2016


Food Security and Nutrition

The Development Fund seeks to strengthen food and nutrition security for poor peasant families in Malawi. Our projects include, e.g., training in climate-adapted and sustainable agricultural techniques, increasing plant diversity on farmlands, and expanding livestock holdings. Click on this link to read more. 

Climate and Environment

Climate change has serious negative consequences for food production in Malawi. Climate adaptation in agriculture is of decisive importance to secure sufficient – and sufficiently nutritious – food in the future. The Development Fund’s projects comprise climate-smart agriculture, conservation of biodiversity and seed security, and sustainable management of natural resources to prevent further deforestation and soil depletion. Click on this link to read more. 

Economics and access to markets

Agriculture is the bedrock of the Malawian economy and a large majority of the population is dependent on agriculture in order to survive. Most small-scale farmers in Malawi run their farms on a near-subsistence level. Many have no surplus at all to sell at local markets. Knowledge of the cultivation of income-bringing plants is limited. Few farmers are organized in cooperatives or other farmers’ associations, which in turn limits their capacity for and access to markets. Click on this link to read more. 

Participation and Equality

Democracy development and community building depend on a strong and inclusive civil society. The Development Fund seeks to strengthen civil society by boosting locally based organizations, such as youth clubs – the so-called “Young Women Can” clubs. We also work to strengthen our partner organizations and their capacity to influence the authorities. Increasing consciousness of one’s own rights is another important part of our work. Click on this link to read more.