Small-scale farmers in rural Zimbabwe rely on rainwater but inadequate rains in recent years have devastated agriculture, causing widespread food shortages. What little rain falls, quickly evaporates or runs off the dry compacted earth, barely penetrating the dusty soil.

Bopoma Villages teaches farmers how to retain rainwater in their soil and store runoff.  Communities across Zaka are coming together to dig  trenches, soak pits and implement other strategies that are transforming dried-out plots into flourishing gardens. Villagers are seeing their crop yields multiply as they combine biointensive farming techniques with rainwater harvesting and conservation.

Villagers spent many hours digging this trench (above) in the scorching heat to capture rainwater that will slowly seep into the ground and sustain their garden. The trench will also save women  and girls countless hours hauling water to keep their garden growing, one bucket at a time.

Rainwater harvesting is an essential component of Bopoma Villages’ agricultural training strategy. It is a no-tech, high-impact, eco-friendly initiative that helps communities achieve food security and self-reliance.