How WAMPP is working with farmers to help them use climate-smart planning approaches
THE Wool and Mohair Promotion Project (WAMPP) is a value-chain based project that is divided into three technical components.
The first component is called Climate-smart Rangeland Management. Under this component, the first section (sub-component) is concerned with improving climate-information.
By improving the quality of weather and climate information, the project aims to help farmers to plan their annual activities in line with available information. As an example: in the past, farmers have lost animals that were exposed to hazardous weather conditions (such as snowfall or hailstorm) shortly after being shorn.
Such mortality could be easily avoided if farmers receive accurate and timely weather forecasts – thus helping them to better schedule activities (such as shearing).
In this regard, WAMPP has procured five automatic weather stations and other meteorological equipment and also financed training of officers in order to bolster the capacity of Lesotho Meteorological Services (LMS).
To reach farmers directly, the project is also training farmers using the Participatory Integrated Climate Services for Agriculture (PICSA) approach. More than 9000 farmers country-wide have already received training under this programme. PICSA equips farmers with a simple, easy-to-follow framework that allows them to factor-in weather and climate information in their planning – thus enabling them to climate-proof their production methods.
Smallholder wool and mohair producers are positive about PICSA. The practical applications in this regard, include: farmers are now able to choose fodder varieties that are suitable for the envisaged weather conditions when planting fodder to be used as supplementary feeding for their sheep and goats.
WAMPP works with smallholder wool and mohair producers to improve the quantity and quality of these fibres that is produced in Lesotho. It is funded by the government of Lesotho, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) and the Lesotho National Wool and Mohair Growers’ Association (LNWMGA). It is a seven-year project that is scheduled to conclude in 2022.