News  >  Blog

Assisting Returnees through Agricultural Training in South Sudan

Published 01/02/2013 by Global Communities

Assisting Returnees through Agricultural Training in South Sudan
By Augustine Sebit, Deputy Program Manager,  IMPROVE+
Samual Kuba likes to say “nothing is as sweet as home where the heart is…” Kuba understands this statement all too well as he is one of many who have recently returned to South Sudan after living in exile for many years. He was forced to flee his home village of Ijiri in Morobo County in 1990 when conflict broke out. He recalls with bleak memories the hardships he faced before and during his exile. After his father’s death, he was forced to drop out of school. As the oldest child in his family, he shouldered much responsibility after his father’s death and married early. “No sooner did I settle down in my village as a married man when the war reached Morobo in 1990 forcing me to flee to Congo where life was difficult as there was no support from any organization. Opportunities for learning skills was not there.” Kuba recounts. 
Today Kuba expresses his delight in finally being able to return home and take advantage of the support provided by Global Communities in the agriculture sector. He belongs to a farmer’s group and is producing crops to improve his family’s food security using the skills he has learned from Global Communities. He is learning the importance of maintaining the soil through agroforestry and other soil conservation techniques. He has also learned about quick growing crop varieties allowing him to increase his crop production for both income generation and consumption by his family. He concluded, “Now I can even teach my children to plant crops in a good manner and how to maintain soil fertility.”
Kuba and farmers like him are receiving training through the Improving Market Potential for Returnees through Opportunities for Viable Economic Development Plus (IMPROVE+) program. Funded by USAID’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, IMPROVE+ is strengthening food security and supporting livelihoods through agricultural production and market-oriented micro-entrepreneurship.