N2Africa project activities in the DRC were initiated in February 2010.
Three local staff members have been appointed for the N2Africa project:
- Jean-Marie Sanginga, in charge of agronomy
- Dieudonne Masumbu, in charge of disseminations
- Yves Irenge, administrator
Three main partners have been engaged in the project: DIOBASS, PAD and SARCAF
The partners started activities at seven locations (Table below). In the first season (A season) of 2011, an expansion of activities to 5 new locations will take place. The partners started with 35-52 households, which grew to 507-751 per partner in the first season of 2011. All partners reached more households than originally planned. The aim is that each partner will cover at least 1200 households in the second season (season B) in 2011.
Table 1: N2Africa partners in the DRC and the locations targeted by the project.
In the first season of 2010, 33 input and variety trials with beans and soybean have been implemented. In the second season of 2010, 33 trials were conducted. In addition, seed multiplication sites have been established for soybean (1.5 ha), common bean (1.5 ha) and climbing bean (0.5 ha).
Schooling and visits
Many courses have been realised to train staff and partners in technical matter, participatory approaches, inoculum use, interview techniques, etc. In these courses, 481 women participated. 400 households have been interviewed for the broad baseline survey at 13 locations. Also, 48 farms have been characterised in detail.
Students and trainees
Currently, 20 students are engaged in the N2Africa project. 11 of them work on the agronomical aspects (IR2 AGRONOMIE), and 9 on dissemination aspects (G3 DEVELOPPEMENT RURAL).and at the end of the academic year we expect to receive 11 theses and 9 internship reports
The project is well known among the regional authorities. Moreover, the documentaries realised by Ken Giller have led to a radio broadcasting on Radio Maendeleo, where the local N2Africa team explains the advantages of legumes for the rural people in the DRC in general and in particular the advantages and challenges of biological nitrogen fixation.
Ives Irenge, Administrator BNF/RDC