Blog: Tanzanian farmers see satellite photo for the first time!



My name is Lara, intern at Justdiggit and a Dutch student from Wageningen University, but here in Tanzania they used to call me Lala. Together with my colleague Eduardo, intern of partner organization MetaMeta and originally from Mexico, we think about and try out ways how farmers can monitor large scale re-greening progress themselves. Therefore, we visit farmers to test monitoring methods at their plots and organize workshops to see how re-greening activities can spread in a village.

During one of these workshops in Nghumbi, a champion town in the Kongwa district, we used a satellite image to teach farmers how to use a map to record re-greening activities. This may sound simple, but might be difficult to understand for farmers who have never seen and used such a ‘map’ before. Surprisingly, they immediately indicated their farm on this map! This gave us vital information on where re-greening already takes place.

In the afternoon, me and Eduardo went to the farmer plots in the field where we together with the farmers carried out soil analysis and counted and measured trees and bushes.

School children came to take a closer look on what these “mzungus” (foreign people) were doing in the field.  


At the end of the day we climbed up a hill and took a picture of the village as you can see underneath. This moment made us realize once again the importance of re-greening such a beautiful place.  This landscape with people waving from below, the red soils, green trees and cattle grazing made an amazing end of our day.


Lara Aelen


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