At Field of Hope, our approach begins with YOU! Your talents and contributions are the seeds that allow us to equip local organizations to impact their communities through agriculture. We partner with established organizations that are currently on the ground and culturally relevant. We water the seed by strengthening our partners and building their agricultural capacity to increase their reach and effectiveness. We stand alongside our partners to mobilize their communities to increase their food security and agricultural growth.
Choosing a Location
Currently, we are working near Lira in Northern Uganda. The decision regarding future locations will be based on finding appropriate partners and beneficiaries.
Finding the Right Resources
We believe there are vast groups of people involved in agriculture in developed countries who have considerable knowledge regarding all phases of agriculture. We have spent considerable time in northern Uganda and have worked to understand the issues and challenges farmers face on a daily basis. The farmers we work with are both men and women. They face incredible challenges in producing not only food for their families but also enough food to sell in the marketplace. Field of Hope is all about matching these people on the ground who have desperate needs with those people in developed countries who have incredible talents uniquely qualified to help them.
Determining Project Costs
Field of Hope carefully assesses the needs on the ground in those areas where we work. In the midst of these needs assessments, we have to carefully weigh the good that might be done with the costs involved in that project. Can potential projects be completed with volunteers or should local contractors be employed? What pool of volunteers do we have to complete the work needed on the ground? We balance the project costs with the life change that may occur between the volunteers and the farmers in the field.
Selecting a Partner
In most developing countries, there are numerous agencies working for the good of the citizens. These agencies work with health care, clean water, and sanitation, among other things. There are also several groups that are working to improve the agriculture competency of farmers in these areas. These groups have workers and management on the ground and have a heart to serve the local farmers. We interview these potential partners and make sure there is alignment in the mission of Field of Hope. We take special care in the selection of potential partners.
In the midst of non-profits working in developing countries, Field of Hope has determined there is a significant gap in several areas of agriculture development. We believe Field of Hope is uniquely qualified to fill these gaps. They are as follows:
Developing countries have made some small levels of progress in agricultural knowledge and development. One problem that is not going away is the lack of food in long periods of dry seasons in Sub-Saharan Africa. This challenge exists in spite of a fairly high water table and relatively good soil. Irrigation holds great potential to increase food security and alleviate hunger, especially during the dry season.
It is easy to believe that mechanization is a simple fix to the challenges of food security and hunger in developing countries, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. Unfortunately, those who have tried this approach have seen significant failures. Numerous broken-down tractors litter the landscape in developing countries. Field of Hope believes in Appropriate Mechanization, meaning enabling mechanization when there is a customer-ready machine, for a machine-ready customer. For mechanization to work, there needs to be appropriate training as well as parts and service support for the customer. The operators and customer need to be trained in operation, maintenance and light repair. Field of Hope is uniquely qualified to enable this activity.
Training and Support
Field of Hope has found a sizeable gap in basic agricultural knowledge, from business planning, to agronomic practices, to financial practices, to appropriate mechanization. In addition to men and women smallholder farmers, we have found a significant population of secondary school students are very interested in pursuing careers in modern agriculture. Field of Hope has a passion to train these passionate people who rely on agriculture for their livelihood and those who see a future in agriculture.