Improving health, tackling economic challenges, and managing natural resources are all important aspects of agroecological development that are tightly interlinked. The Livelihood, Agroecology, Nutrition, and Development (LAND) Project is committed to addressing these challenges using a holistic, participatory approach to agroecological development—one where the most up-to-date scientific evidence is merged with crucial, on the ground know-how and contextual knowledge.
By combining the expertise of the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Center for Integrated Agriculture (CIAS), the Agriculture and Rural Development Research Institute (ARDRI) at the University of Fort Hare, and Kidlinks World, the LAND project seeks to improve livelihoods and health in communities across South Africa. The LAND Project is thus a partnership between NGOs and the University, which uses participatory approaches and educational outreach to generate change. We engage undergraduate students in service learning trips, foster open dialogue between community members and local agencies, and seek to innovate new methods of sustainable development. The LAND Project emphasizes continual, cross-cultural learning and relationship building to ensure lasting partnerships and create durable change.
We give special focus to the needs and opportunities for youth in the communities where we work. Children and youth are at once the most vulnerable community members, and a community’s best hope for the future.