Irish Aid Project 2

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The Challenge

Although farming technologies and techniques are continuously being developed by research institutes, these innovations often fail to reach Malawian smallholder farmers, particularly female farmers. This is largely due to a scarcity of reliable, regular agricultural extension services and a failure to account for the needs of farmers in implementing these services.

Our Solution

This project offers a two-step strategy to developing an effective ongoing farm radio advisory service that responds to farmers’ needs and priorities. First, Farm Radio Trust will work with communities to facilitate their selection of a climate smart focused practice to be featured in a participatory radio campaign (PRC). Second, we will work with radio stations to develop and broadcast ongoing, effective, interactive farm advisory programs.


This project builds on the success of the first Irish Aid-funded FRT project by making four main improvements

  1. Nkhotakota Community Radio Station will build on the PRC approach by employing the integrated farm radio service (I-Fras) model, which allows for the broadcast of year round interactive radio programming that covers a wider range of topics.
  2. In addition to Nkhotakota Community Radio Station, we have partnered with Dzimwe Community Radio Station to broaden the scope of the project.
  3. We have built an even stronger community feedback and quality assurance program through enhanced use of ICTs and radio listener clubs.
  4. We will help develop and distribute a range of resources derived from these activities to radio broadcasters across Africa.


This project is currently ongoing. Through fifteen months of radio programming, it aims to reach 187 500 listeners and have at least 25 000 farmers, including 12 500 female farmers, try out a new climate smart innovations on their farms.

Irish Aid Project Profile

Focus: Climate smart innovations

Location: Nkhotakota and Mangochi districts, Malawi

Implementation Period: January 2014-March 2015

Status: Ongoing

Project Lead: Catherine Mloza-Banda, Agriculture Value Chain Officer

Partners: Farm Radio International, Irish Aid

Radio Station Partners: Nkhotakota Community Radio Station, Dzimwe Community Radio Station 

Strategic Partner