Effective use of vetiver grass: A participatory radio campaign in Malawi helps farmers keep soil on their fields and money in their pockets

    | February 13, 2012

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    Our script of the week shows how Participatory Radio Campaigns can make a big difference in the life of small-scale farmers.

    As part of Farm Radio International’s African Farm Radio Research Initiative (AFRRI) in Malawi, Zodiak Broadcasting Station aired a series of programs called Mlera Nthaka, which means “soil conservation” in the Chichewa language. The programs provided information on planting vetiver grass hedges to reduce soil erosion. They provided practical information on how to construct and maintain vetiver grass, and described the benefits that farmers can expect. As a result of the five-month radio campaign, many farmers adopted vetiver grass, and groups of farmers established communal vetiver nurseries.

    The script presents interviews conducted with farmers and extension workers. This script is a perfect example of how targeted and participatory radio programs can help farmers achieve great things.