Transforming Traditional Farming Systems into Sustainable Agriculture

In support of the Government of Zambia’s efforts to ensure that climate adaptation interventions in the agricultural sector are gender-responsive and transformative, UNDP in collaboration with FAO organized a skills development workshop in Siavonga, Zambia from 18 to 21 September 2017 on integrating gender into climate adaptation planning.

The intervention was supported by the International Climate Initiative (IKI) of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) as part of Integrating Agriculture in National Adaptation Plans programme (NAP-Ag). 

The objective of the engagement was to enhance the knowledge and skills of participants to integrate gender issues into their day to day work of planning, designing and implementing climate change responses in the agricultural sector. The participants were from the Ministry of Agriculture; Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry; Ministry of Finance; Ministry of Gender; Ministry of National Development Planning; and the Ministry of Transport and Communications. Additional technical expertise from the University of Zambia and the Zambia Agriculture Research Institute enhanced the discussions on policy reforms, the importance of research, and evidence-based planning.

The workshop was in line with the National Climate Change Strategy which highlights that climate change poses a further burden on women due to gender differentiated roles of reproduction and production. This is further amplified in the Paris Agreement on climate change which Zambia ratified in 2016 and translated into the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC). The Paris Agreement encourages countries to develop and implement national adaptation plans (NAP) for climate change in vulnerable sectors. It is in this regard, that the Ministry of Agriculture commenced this process to ensure that traditional farming systems are less susceptible to climate variations and made more resilient. As 70% of the population is dependent on agriculture, of which 60% are women, it is important that gender dimensions are included in the strengthening of the agricultural sector to bring meaningful transformation to people’s lives. 

“…….I plan to include components on gender in trainings for agricultural extension staff – in this way we can reach the farmers’’  Mr. Mulele Moses - Ministry of Agriculture.

The Government of Zambia is building effective strategies that will enhance adaptation planning, protect vulnerable communities, improve agricultural productivity, and build a climate-resilient future with the technical and financial support of the United Nations system in Zambia, including UNDP and FAO.


It is not only in the agricultural sector where UNDP is providing support in relation to climate change. UNDP has been supporting stakeholder engagement and preparations for the 23rd Conference of Parties on Climate Change (COP 23) taking place in Bonn, Germany from 26th October to 19th November 2017. UNDP has provided technical advisory services on national issues to be raised by the Zambian delegation, which includes various government ministries, civil society organizations, academia and the private sector.

UNDP and the UN family look to the continued partnership to assist the Government and people of Zambia to implement the outcomes from the COP 23.

“..….after this training I am now more confident to speak about gender issues” Ms. Linda N. Chonya - Ministry of National Dev. Planning

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