The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the government of Bangladesh have signed a USD 16 million grant financing agreement to boost a project aimed at promoting climate resili-ence and diversifying agriculture.
The agreement was signed last week at the Economic Relations Department in Dhaka.
The Diversified Resilient Agriculture for Improved Food and Nutrition Security (RAINS) project, whose total size is USD 31 million, was successfully proposed by the Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) to the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP) in 2021.
IFAD will supervise the project, which will be implemented by MOA, with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) providing technical assistance.
The four-year project will work in 14 districts in the coastal region, the drought-prone region, and the northern Char region, supporting communities to build resilience to environmental and economic shocks.
By specifically targeting households most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, RAINS will di-rectly improve income and nutrition of 420,000 women and men.
“Bangladesh has made remarkable progress in boosting food production for its growing population. Yet, many lack knowledge and access to nutritious food. Initiatives like RAINS, which promote diversified agriculture, may foster agricultural productivity and food availability and enhance overall nutrition sta-tus in the country,” said Arnoud Hameleers, IFAD Country Director for Bangladesh.
Activities include enabling farmers to adopt climate-smart and nutrition-sensitive technologies, achieved through integrated farming approaches. The project will collaborate with the farmers’ groups and pro-duction clusters to encourage on-farm diversification by mapping needs and disseminating integrated farming business models tailored to the specific needs of women and youth living in poverty and vulner-ability.
The IFAD on Tuesday said the project will promote innovative climate-smart water management by providing solar irrigation pump sets, drip irrigation systems, and rainwater harvesting facilities, enhanc-ing water availability for irrigation and drinking purposes.