Maize can make a change

Posted by Sarah Caughey on Fri, 05 Mar 2010 | Bookmark: digg this Post this to Post this to Facebook

“This is my second year growing maize. Maize gives a good crop. It increases the income into my family, it is easy to grow and to keep. It is nutritious and easy to eat. So maize can make a change.”

These are the words of Ngendahimana Jean Bosco, one of the farmers taking part in a maize growing initiative in Kibungo Diocese in Rwanda, through which farmers are being encouraged to join together in co-operatives to grow maize.

The CMS Ireland Annual Project in 2009, Start Small, Grow Tall, focused on Rwanda, and this initiative. Across Ireland, 59 parishes took part in the Start Small Grow Tall Project. As well as learning more about Rwanda and praying for our partners in Kibungo Diocese, Sunday Schools helped to raise £20,000 to support the diocese in this initiative. A fantastic amount! Click here to read more about how parishes in Ireland engaged with the project.

Reverend Ernest Mahoro, Development Officer for Kibungo Diocese, has been meeting with members of these co-operatives to see how growing maize has made a difference to their lives. Here he shares some of their stories with us:

“I like maize because it doesn’t stop me going to school like rice. I like to eat maize toasted, cooked, as porridge and bread – maize is sweet.”
Ngenzi Clement (aged 7)

“Some time back I used to grow beans, but the expenditures were higher than the income. When I started to grow maize I produced three times much more than beans. Now I am able to satisfy my basic needs, and send children to school. So I thank the Anglican Church together with its partners who trained us and gave us sees, manure and technical assistance. May God bless them.”

“I am a child from a poor family. Before growing maize it was hard to eat all the days, but now we can eat at least once a day, and I am able to go to school. So I am happy. My dad has bought two iron sheets for roofing our house, I will enjoy the new house too.”

Please continue to remember Kibungo Diocese in Rwanda, praying that God will bless their harvests and these co-operatives so that these communities will grow tall. Give thanks for the great changes that these maize seeds are bringing to the local communities.