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Irish Aid provides support to small holder farmers in Tigray, Ethiopia

Bench Terraces construction-hillside development ICRAF

Irish Aid provides support to small holder farmers in Tigray, Ethiopia

In Tigray, Ethiopia, Irish Aid’s climate and livelihood programmes focus on increasing productivity and resilience of small holder farmers to withstand climate extremes, including drought, which regularly affects the region. This support complements our investment in the Productive Safety Net Programme (PSNP), Ethiopia’s social protection programme which targets around 8 million food insecure households every year, in an effort to give them access to a safety net, a livelihood and nutrition services.

An important result achieved by Irish Aid supported programmes in Tigray, is that despite drought and other climatic impacts, there was reported increased agricultural production in the region for smallholder farmers, through sustainable practices such as ecosystem and land restoration, small scale irrigation, terracing, use of improved crop seed varieties and use of weather information to inform farming decisions. This resulted in better nutrition and improved household incomes especially among the female headed households and the youth, who were particularly targeted in the programmes.

It was also found that the provision of livestock (goats) and improved crop varieties by the Tigray Agriculture Research Institute (TARI), was beneficial for asset building and provided protection against climate shocks, which previously lead to crop losses.

The approach taken was gender sensitive, ensuring that the most vulnerable groups to the impacts of climate change, especially women, children, the youth and female headed households, benefited from the programmes, through skills development and access to new technologies. 

Irish Aid provides support to small holder farmers in Tigray, Ethiopia, through a range of sustainable practices including construction of terraces, which has led to an increase in agricultural production, as well as better nutrition and improved household incomes.

Irish Aid provides support in Tigray to the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), which promotes youth engagement in seed generation and enterprise development, while promoting sustainable natural resource management practices. Farm Africa, alongside the World Agroforestry Centre, also support on-farm irrigation technologies, livestock management for poor women, and apiary. Support is also provided to the Tigray Agriculture Research Institute to test varieties of both crop and livestock to changing weather conditions.

‘Irish Aid is the most development oriented partner in the region, supporting farmer led approaches and influencing policies to take up agriculture innovations’ Dr. Girmay, Director, Tigray Agriculture Research Institute (TARI)

Find out More about Irish Aid’s work in Climate Change

To find out more about the support Irish Aid provides to Ethiopia, as well as our other key partner countries, click on the link below to access our Country Climate Action Reports, which set out the climate situation in each county and the funding and programmes in place to build resilience and combat the effects of climate change, available below:    


Further information on the work of Irish Aid in climate change is also available by signing up to the Climate Learning Platform, accessed via