[Andes Resilient in Ecuador] Results of the discussions on the ancestral knowledge of Andean family farm women

A series of discussions on women’s ancestral knowledge in Andean family farming were held in Ecuador, to identify ancestral knowledge for the fight against climate change.

09.2021 - ANDES RESILIENTES - Diálogos de Saberes de Mujeres de la Agricultura Familiar Campesina en Ecuador - COTOPAXI

In September, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation held four meetings in the provinces of Azuay, Bolivar, Chimborazo and Cotopaxi. They were attended by over 80 women leaders of communities and associations that keep and pass on traditional knowledge on farm production.

Rural women farmers are in charge of many farming activities, caring for seeds, tilling, making natural fertilisers, selecting and preserving food to look after the health and nutrition of their families and ensure the food security of the villages they supply.

However, despite the vital role of women throughout the agri-food system, they still face gaps and inequalities and there are few incentives for their empowerment. Ecuador’s  Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG) and the Andes Resilient to Climate Change project are working together to replicate and scale up the progress made through the National Agricultural Strategy for Rural Women (ENAMR).

09.2021 - ANDES RESILIENTES - Diálogos de Saberes de Mujeres de la Agricultura Familiar Campesina en Ecuador - CHIMBORAZO

ENAMR aims to provide opportunities for a life with dignity and peace for rural people, especially rural women, with access to resources, assets and opportunities. Resilient Andes in Ecuador has been accompanying various activities, promoting affirmative gender action and women’s empowerment, focusing on climate change adaptation best practices that strengthen the food and water security of the most vulnerable rural Andean women and men.

Andrés Mogro, coordinator of Resilient Andes in Ecuador, explained that the discussions focused on gathering good practices for managing agricultural systems, water resources, agro-biodiversity, climate change and gender in each province, with an emphasis on gathering wisdom that can tackle climate change. 

The discussions showed that the women cultivate a diversity of crops that are mainly used for food, and that they are the ones in charge of tilling the land while the men migrate to the city. The women said that most of what they had learned about food cultivation came from their parents and grandparents, highlighting that they appreciate women’s meetings as they help retrieve the learning and wisdom that they are losing because of climate change.

The information will be systematised to produce communication materials, including radio programmes which the MAG will broadcast in the four provinces and to local and national public and private actors.

These are some of the comments the women made at the meetings:

Source: Andes Resilient to Climate Change

The regional project Andes Resilient to Climate Change, promoted by SDC and facilitated by the consortium Helvetas Swiss Inter-cooperation-Fundación Avina in partnership with the International Institute Sustainable Development-IISD and IFAD, is part of SDC’s Global Climate Change and Environment Programme. Resilient Andes is part of this global programme. Its first phase is from May 2020-April 2024.

Noticias relacionadas:

Useful links:
Factsheet Regional Project “Andes Resilient to Climate Change
Video Regional Project “Andes Resilient to Climate Change
Brochure Regional Project Andes Resilient to Climate Change – Ecuador

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