Water catchment, Irrigation and Storage Pilot (WISP) | Ghana

WISP Picture 2Ghana has emerged as one of Africa's economic success stories with steady economic growth during the past two decades, particularly in its agriculture and mining sectors.

However, the gains the country has made are not evenly distributed amongst its people. Many Ghanaians, particularly in the north, still live in poverty and are regularly prone to food insecurity. Traditional, small-scale farmers are particularly vulnerable. Three quarters of the Northern population still lives in rural areas.

The WISP pilot project aims to introduce water storage and irrigation equipment in Northern Ghana that can enable women farmers to extend the growing season, produce additional income and food for their families.

The costing and local availability of three systems are being trialed – tube wells, poly-tanks and roof-top rain water harvesting through ferro-cemented tanks. The water from these systems will then be used to maintain keyhole gardens – an intensive method of vegetable gardening which conserves water – and assessed as to the viability and the perceived benefits of these by the women farmers.

If the pilot proves a success it is hoped the learnings can be incorporated to the MEDA GROW project or scaled-up through additional funding.

 
WISP PictureProject Quick Facts

Goal: To introduce water storage and irrigation equipment that will enable women farmers to extend the growing season, producing additional income and food for their families

Reaching: 15-20 farmers (initial pilot)

Funding: MEDA and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Project length: 2013-2015

For more information on the project, check out the 'Women-owned Keyhole Gardens' report and a study on how 'Keyhole gardens contribute to women’s economic empowerment in Ghana'