Hello to all!

    | May 10, 2010

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    FRW has a large and growing contingent of subscribers from Mali. In fact, we have more subscribers from Mali than any other country! This week, we welcome the following new subscribers from Mali: Aminata Bagayoko, from Alliance Multifonctionnelle de Koutiala, Amadou Fofana, from Radio Bamakan, Mami Touré, from Bramali, and Mariam Sylla and Kadidia Traore, both from Coopérative Jama Jigi. We also welcome Ben Kopa, from a farmers’ organization in Cameroon, and Isaac Mafuka Kilunda, a student at the University of South Africa.

    As promised last week, we bring you another story about the reality of land grabbing. In our last edition, we featured a story from Mali, where villagers saw their land seized without compensation when a Libyan company established large-scale rice fields. This week, we visit villages in Sierra Leone where a Swiss company is setting up sugarcane plantations. These villagers have been promised jobs at the plantation and compensation for leased land. Our news story asks “Can locals really benefit from ‘land grabs’”?

    Our second story looks at how pastoralists in two parts of East Africa are coping with climatic changes that threaten their livelihoods. One group is experimenting with a very different sort of livestock, while another has adopted a new approach to restoring herds, all in efforts to preserve incomes and feed their families.

    Be sure to take a moment to visit this week’s Farm Radio Action and Script of the Week sections. Farm Radio International is proud to introduce our latest script package, which presents the 15 prize-winning scripts from our scriptwriting competition on smallholder farmer innovation. Each script takes a story-based approach to presenting an innovation by a real farmer, in areas such as soil fertility, urban agriculture, and power generation. This week’s Script of the Week is the top prize winner. It describes how a creative Kenyan farmer found a better way to preserve his potatoes.

    Happy reading!

    -The Farm Radio Weekly Team