Our Skills for Life programme is an extension of our Water of Life initiative and enables farmers to irrigate their farmland and increase their capacity and income. Northern Nigeria is well suited for irrigated horticulture. The region has a long history of irrigated agricultural production using slow labour-intensive, traditional water-lifting methods such as hand dug wells, ropes and buckets.
Unfortunately, during the growing season, not only is labour available for water lifting in short supply but also most producers cannot afford the alternative gasoline-powered pumps due to initial high investment, maintenance and operating costs.
Between 2006 and 2008 Guinness Nigeria worked to help these farmers by introducing and disseminating low-cost, high-capacity human-powered water pumps, called Guinness Amfani Pumps, and installing hand-drilled tube wells to increase the versatility of the treadle pumps. We invested N13.2 million in the programme, which was implemented by the American Non-Governmental Organisation, Enterprise Works.
Over an 18-month period, we worked through two growing seasons in three adjacent states in Northern Nigeria (Katsina, Kano, Kaduna), helping farmers to get water up to seven times faster than they used to. These farmers are able to irrigate up to half a hectare of land with a single pump, earning as much as $1,500 during the period, doubling the average annual household income. The project has benefited over 800 farmers and their extended families. It has also contributed about $200,000 to artisans trained to manufacture and distribute the pumps.
Here are some quotes from beneficiaries:
“We are grateful to Guinness Nigeria for selecting our community in the first phase of this project.”
Emir Of Zaria
“Thanks to Guinness, we now have enough resources for our domestic needs and the paying of our children’s school fees. We have also invested the money we realised from this project in the building of houses, buying of cars and other valuable things including rearing of livestock.”
Gemu Mai Amalanke
“The interesting thing about the Guinness Amfani pump project is that the technology is community-based as our local welders are trained to produce them at affordable prices.”
Chairman Dutsi Local Government Council, Katsina State
“Before the introduction of the Guinness Amfani Pump, we were without work during the dry season but this time around things have changed for the better.”