China, Cameroon, Ghana, Ethiopia, Madagascar
For millions of disadvantaged rural communities and smallholder farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa, bamboo has the potential to contribute to poverty reduction, youth employment, and environmental protection in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Bamboo is easily integrated into smallholder agriculture – including wastelands, degraded lands and in homesteads – or to be farmed as a main cash crop. A perennial resource with relatively high tolerance to climate shocks, such as drought and fluctuating temperatures, bamboo can help to build smallholder farm resilience to climate change. It can be harvested annually or as needed for cash. Bamboo can be sold for timber or burnt for energy, and this enables rural communities to break into the biomass and energy product markets to raise off-farm income.
This programme draws on the South-South cooperation between China and Africa and within Africa to upscale climate-smart, smallholder-based bamboo value chains in Africa. This approach builds on 20 years of IFAD investments with the International Network for Bamboo and Rattan (INBAR), which have successfully validated smallholder bamboo value chain models and technologies. Worldwide, these models have created 250, 000 new rural jobs, primarily benefiting women and youth.
The overall project goal is to enhance incomes, livelihoods and climate change adaptive capacities of African smallholder farmers, women and youth by upscaling and increasing their participation in climate-smart bamboo value chains.
Specific objectives of the project include: