Location: Southern Burkina Faso
The highly weathered soils of West Africa’s semi-arid Sudanian and Sahelian agro-ecological regions suffer from naturally low levels of organic matter that have been further degraded by agricultural intensification and shifting cropping patterns. Additional organic matter, such as compost, is vital to improving the soil’s water-holding capacity and long-term fertility. In the late 1980s, Pag-La-Yiri(PLY), a Burkina Faso women’s organization, also known by its French name, l’Association des Femmes de Zabré, launched an extension campaign that trained over 8,000 women in compost production and use between 1987 and 2002. Crop yields subsequently doubled.