Communities of Change


In the last decades, agricultural development was focused on efficiency and an increase of productivity. This resulted in an overall growth of produce, but at the same time has had negative consequences, as many small farmers in the South have not been able to compete with large farms a sustainable agriculture has come under pressure.

Both ENDS, together with Cordaid, has decided to join forces with local organizations to pave the way for these small farmers to support themselves practicing sustainable agriculture. The farmers will be supported in the sustainable cultivation of crops and in selling their products for a better price. The Communities of Change Alliance explicitly chooses to support small farmers in the South. By promoting sustainable production and mutual cooperation between farmers, they can organise better and prepare for the future.


The current industrial approach to agriculture is based on unrestricted access to water, nutrients and land expansion and has provided and ensured a greater food production so far. However, there is a downside to this approach: there is degradation of natural resources like water and soil (depletion, pollution, erosion, drought, etc.). In addition, small producers (f / m) haven't been able to compete as they benefit less from this increased productivity and have to watch the impoverishment of their environment.
The program of the Communities of Change Alliance (Cordaid and Both ENDS) focuses on these small farmers, particularly women. An improved and sustainable production should lead to higher incomes and a stronger position in local agricultural markets.
In the Communities of Change alliance civil society organizations work together, while small farmers - especially women - and sustainable food production in Bolivia, Philippines, Ghana, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Malawi, Uganda, Tanzania, Vietnam and Zambia have a central role.
The assumption is that improved and sustainable production will lead to higher incomes, greater food security and a stronger position for small farmers.


Within the alliance Both ENDS will contribute its specific knowledge and expertise in the area of green and environmental sustainability. In addition, Both ENDS builds networks and advocates for a green and fair economy.

We will focus on issues such as sustainable "future smart" agriculture, agro-ecological products from agro-energy crops,  'non-timber forest products' (NTFP) and agroforestry (Analog Forestry), and certification of sustainable production. We will emphasize the importance of creating political space for small farmers by, for example, 
a 'Negotiated Approach for the management of natural resources', 'participatory land use planning' and international development policy.

Cordaid has a lot of experience with working with small farmers,  and stimulating them with small loans and financial training. Both ENDS promotes local alternatives and brings them to the attention of policymakers.  Within the alliance, Both ENDS and Cordaid aim to scale up these small local sustainability initiatives through the sharing of knowledge and the creating political space.




Both ENDS and Cordaid strengthen the position of small farmers in the south and promote a sustainable agricultural policy by:

* Increasing production in a sustainable manner, aiming on immediate poverty alleviation.

* Improving access to land and water for small farmers which will also help make production more sustainable.

* Advocate for sustainable management of natural resources through policy, law and legislation with the focus more on the right to good, especially outside the big cities.

Making the voice and opinions of small farmers in the South be heard, we can inspire Dutch and EU policy makers to create  a sustainable and ecological global framework.

Sustainability basket:

Within the programme Both ENDS and Cordaid have created a Sustainability Basket for 2011 only which was a facility for 'seed money' or small grants that focused on innovative activities that support small-scale producers. It was by purpose not eligible for regular projects which generally can be applied for at regular funds. The aim was scouting and supporting the development of real innovative and necessary sustainability initiatives in the target countries, or worldwide.

In two stages 11 proposals were granted (out of 34 applications) and summaries of these projects are given in the downloadable document. The fund was discontinued in 2012.

downloadable document

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