In rural Africa, there is very little infrastructure. That means no hospitals, schools, or running water. Picture tiny dung huts set amongst thick jungle or dotting a vast desert. Each with their own over-used little plot of dirt on which to grow food. They could be hours away from a source of water—and even then it might not be clean.
WHAT DOES THE HUNGER PROJECT DO?
Our Epicentre Strategy in Africa unites 10,000 to 15,000 people from a cluster of villages to create a dynamic centre, or “Epicentre.” This is where villagers are inspired to act to meet their own basic needs. At the physical centre of the Epicentre is a building that houses the community’s programmes for health, education, food security, clean water and economic development and is a part of an integrated strategy. Alongside these programmes, The Hunger Project delivers Vision, Commitment, Action workshops that empower our village partners to transform from waiting for hand-outs to confident, productive people who have created their own opportunities to feed and care for their families. This holistic strategy builds a path to sustainable self-reliance through four phases over about eight years.
The Epicentre Strategy is integrated and holistic. It achieves synergy among programs in health (including HIV/AIDS prevention), education, adult literacy, nutrition, improved farming and food security, microfinance, water and sanitation, and building community spirit with a momentum of accomplishment involving the entire population.
It is economically sustainable. The primary resources for the strategy come from the local people themselves and by making existing local government resources more effective. Income generation is built into the strategy from the start. Within five to eight years, our epicentres require little or no financial support from The Hunger Project.
The Epicentre Strategy is environmentally sustainable. People at our epicentres learn composting and small-scale, environmentally sound irrigation technologies such as drip irrigation.
The Hunger Project has mobilized more than 121 Epicentre communities in eight different countries in Africa. 1.7million people have participated in our Vision, Commitment and Action workshop and have taken the courageous first step to ending their own hunger. In 2016 and 2017 alone, more than 211,000 people from across 10 Programme Countries have reached a point of Self-Reliance.
The goal of our work in Africa is to support communities in acting as agents of their own development, so they can continue to perpetuate, sustain and enhance the work begun in partnership with The Hunger Project.
Watch the following video for more information about our Epicenter Strategy.
CREATING SUSTAINABLE FUTURES
Sustainability is one of The Hunger Project's fundamental principles. Ending hunger in a sustainable way means starting at the local level, involving entire communities in the process and addressing all aspects of social life, including our impact on the environment.
Allan, is a Hunger Project partner in Majete, Malawi. He used to engage in poaching in the wildlife preserve near his community to support his family. After participating in The Hunger Project's leadership trainings, Allan created and set out toward a new vision for his community — one that protects the planet and reduces poverty.