About two hundred farmers groups across the country are poised to access US$160 million worth of World Bank funded matching grants to enhance climate smart agricultural practices under the Malawi Watershed Services Improvement Project ( MWASIP).
Matching grants, in the simplest terms, are grants that require the applicant to provide funds in addition to the grant award. In other words, the applicant is matching the grant funds with their own funds.
MWASIP technical team member Andrew Chamaza said at a media interface on Friday in the commercial Blantyre that the aim of the grants is to increase sustainable watersheds management.
He said the project was already in the thick of disbursing funds to the first call that is due to be completed by the end of October and that another call will be made soon after.
“K450 million is expected to go to 37 farmers groups while 15 agri-business enterprises will get K433 million,” Chamaza said.
According to Chamaza, MWASIP is optimistic that by the end of 2023 all the beneficiaries of the project will have accessed their matching grants.
The farmers groups benefiting from the first call of the grants are from seven districts namely Ntcheu, Neno, Blantyre, Zomba, Machinga Mangochi and Neno.
The six-year long project has an approved US$157 million funding with the Malawi Government chipping in US$3 million.
The project objective is to increase the adoption of sustainable landscape management practices and improve watershed services in targeted watersheds.