The climate crisis has driven many societies into chaos and other communities into stagnation. In Tanzania, East Africa, the majority of the population is comprised of about 80% smallholder farmers that rely on agricultural production to sustain themselves both socially and economically. In recent years, smallholder farmers have been complaining about the soil infertility in all 26 regions of Tanzania mainland. The root causes of these problems are the higher rates of chemical fertilizer usage, deforestation, and unfriendly eco-agriculture.
When I was selected to be En-ROADS Climate Ambassador last year, I was so excited to address the climate crisis through this amazing tool. I have conducted several trainings to school teachers, smallholder farmers, university students, and young people. I am a Country Representative and Project Manager for One More Salary, a non-profit organization registered in Sweden and Tanzania, focused on poverty reduction. With this perspective, I believe that everything related to the climate crisis in my community is clearly associated with poverty. It doesn’t matter, whether personal income poverty or personal mind poverty.
I chose to integrate En-ROADS into the projects I helped conduct with One More Salary, often without publicizing this upfront to the audience. I did so because it is sometimes difficult to gather people without setting up some amenities, like meals and allowances. I normally tell the audiences that we have to think globally and act locally, because the climate action we take here in Tanzania has great impact in the whole world.
So far, I have already trained roughly 500 people on how the En-ROADS Climate Simulator works and how it can assist us shaping our future if we really take climate action. In order to curb the challenges mentioned earlier, I spread the word of reforestation initiatives, afforestation, and introduce concepts of regenerative agriculture. This is due to the fact that most of these actions can directly impact our community. I don’t emphasize other solutions, like electrification and new technology, because even gaining access to electricity is still a huge problem here. In the area I live we are “off-the-grid”, so you can understand this reality.