In the Congo, Centuries-Old Farming Techniques Are Transforming Lives
ATLANTA, July 20, 2016 – When discussing modern agriculture technology in the United States,sensors on plants, satellite images and data-driven farming come to mind. But for residents in the Congo, progress is being made with centuries-old “technology” – in the form of oxen – that can combat hunger and save lives.
The story of how ox-powered farming is revolutionizing food sustainability one village at a time in the Congo is told in the latest Commerce of Caring podcast episode, produced by Aptos. “Congo: The CATI Project” reveals why this ancient practice is considered novel in many regions and how it is reshaping the harsh legacy of decades of civil war.
In this narrative we learn that introducing cattle to the fields has enabled residents to feed their families, produce a surplus to feed others, and kick-start local economies. The podcast also explains how the people of retail are helping to make this happen, through RetailROI, CongoVoice and Congo Animal Traction Initiative (CATI).
“Farming in the Congo – before the arrival of oxen – was done by hand and was slow, back-breaking work,” said Jeff Roster of IHL Group and RetailROI. “When you work yourself to the bone, and you still do not have enough to feed your family, despair sets in – in addition to unrelenting hunger. The oxen are a resource for more productive farming methods, but they are more than that. They are also a catalyst to long-term economic development and, in the short-term, to improved food security and happier, more hopeful lives.”
As the podcast details, the introduction of oxen in the Congo is not without significant challenges. In this episode we’ll hear the obstacles and victories on the way to self-sustainability, including how the oxen must be guarded around the clock to keep desperate people from “eating the tractor.”
As with all Commerce of Caring episodes, this installment features firsthand accounts by ordinary people whose contributions are achieving extraordinary results in improving people’s lives. To listen to these compelling stories of conflict, survival and transformation, access the series via your favorite podcast app, iTunes or www.commerceofcaring.org.
About Commerce of Caring The Commerce of Caring podcast series from Aptos explores the power and possibilities of positive change, and the unsung heroes who are using it to create real opportunities for children in need. In exclusive interviews and firsthand accounts, each episode features stories of ordinary people making an extraordinary difference in the lives of young people throughout the world by turning hardship into hope. The series also shows how people across the retail industry are supporting the efforts of these inspiring individuals through The Retail Orphan Initiative (RetailROI) and their partner organizations. To subscribe to this series or obtain more information, visit www.commerceofcaring.org.
About RetailROI The Retail Orphan Initiative is a charity funded by leading retail technology and solutions providers, consultants, media organizations and retailers. Its mission is to provide real solutions for vulnerable children by raising awareness; by building a sponsor and funding network among retailers, vendors and manufacturers; and by channeling resources to proven, local organizations delivering frontline support directly to those in need. RetailROI has raised millions of dollars for a diverse range of education, health and social projects in 17 countries around the world. More than 90% of the funds raised go directly to the programs they are intended to support. For more information, visit www.retailroi.org.
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